Date Responded 20 February 2020

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:

  1. How many motorists have been caught speeding in your force area, broken down by month for 2018 and 2019?
  2. The total amount of money in fines issued to drivers for speeding offences, broken down by month for 2018 and 2019.
  3. What is the top speed someone has been caught driving in a) 20mph, b) 30mph, c) 40mph, d) 50mph, e) 60mph and f) 70mph zone, broken down by year for 2018 and 2019.

In Response:

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

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.

The information requested is not held in a format that allows its extraction within the permitted 18 hour threshold. 

To provide a response to point 2 alone would require in excess of approximately 5000 speeding offences per month to be located and reviewed to establish which had been issued with fines and how much the fines were. As im sure you are aware, fines are not issued to drivers persay. Drivers can be presented with a number of options dependant on their eligibility criteria. Some drivers take the speed awareness course option (this is wholly dependent on their eligibility), others pay the fine, others take the matter to court.  Even at a conservative estimate of 3 minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to locate, extract and compile a response to point 2 alone, for a one month period only, would take over 250 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.

When applying Section 12 exemption our duty to assist under As part of your request would exceed the prescribed limit, as defined by the Act, there is no requirement for Northumbria Police to provide a response to the remaining parts of 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 questions 1 & 3 only, as set out above in your submission.

If this would be useful, you may wish to refine and resubmit your request accordingly.

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