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Date Responded 28 September 2018

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.

You asked:

How many people aged 80 and older have been on a speed awareness course in the last five years?

Please could it also include how many of those are female and how many are male.

 We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.

Information Commissioners Office (ICO) guidelines state that:

A public authority must confirm or deny whether it holds the information requested unless the cost of this alone would exceed the appropriate limit.

In Response:

I can neither confirm nor deny that the information you require is held by Northumbria Police as to actually determine if it is held would exceed the permitted 18 hours therefore Section 12(2) 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.

I have set out the reasons for this below.

The information requested is not held in a format that allows its retrieval within the permitted time constraints.  There are thousands of National Speed Awareness Courses attended and completed every year.  In 2017 alone, there were 35,781 such courses attended and so far in 2018 there have been 23,045 courses attended.  Each of those records would have to be manually reviewed to see if the gender was male or female and then check the age of the person to establish which, if any, were aged 80+. Even at a conservative estimate of 1 minute per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract the information for those time periods alone would take over 980 hours.  This would obviously be considerably more for the remaining years.

As we have estimated that to extract this information would take over 18 hours, 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.

When applying Section 12 exemption our duty to assist under Section 16 of the Act would normally entail that we contact you to determine whether it is possible to refine the scope of your request to bring it within the cost limits. However, from the information we have outlined above I see no reasonable way in which we can do so.

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