Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
- How many drivers have you charged (e.g. issued a fine/fixed penalty notice) with careless driving, broken down by calendar year, since 2013?
- How many drivers have you charged (e.g. issued a fine/fixed penalty notice) for middle lane hogging offences specifically, broken down by calendar year, since 2013?
- Please provide location/roads for all fines/penalties issued for careless driving (or the three roads where there have been the most careless driving offences) from 2019 and 2020 thus far broken down by calendar year
- The total amount in income from any fines/penalties issued to drivers for ‘careless driving’ broken down by calendar year, since 2018?
- The total amount in income from any fines/penalties issued to drivers for middle-lane hogging offences, broken down by calendar year, since 2018?
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Fixed Penalty Unit of Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police, however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons.
To establish a response at this point 2 alone would require in excess of 2,200 careless driving offences (middle lane hogging comes under this offence) to be located and manually reviewed to establish which were related to middle lane hogging. Even at a conservative estimate of 3 minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take over 101 hours, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply. This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00.
You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for your request.
Please note that Section 12 would also applicable to each of the points 3, 4 and 5 due to manual searches having to be undertaken to extract the data specified by your request.
However, in order to provide you with some assistance, under Section 16 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, an initial assessment of the information that may be provided within the time constraints would be for point 1 only as outlined above.
If this would be useful, you may wish to refine and resubmit your request accordingly.