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QLD Fined - Riding on the shoulder

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by Tard_Whisperer, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. Riding home through Nudgee on the Gateway in the afternoon NB on 14/4/15 at around 3.30pm and constable V.M. Carman, a renowned motorcycle cop that has a passion for hating other bike riders was pulling over every bike rider riding in the left shoulder giving them a $341 fine. The speed limit had just been dropped form 90kms to 60kms and the traffic was stopped. He was sitting just on the shoulder before the commencement of the off lane to the service station. This cop has just moved to Northside of Brissy from the southside where he also had a reputation of pulling over every bike he could. Yep, I copped a fine to. Taking this one to court. Vent over.

  2. #2 smileedude, Apr 16, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2015
    Aren't you allowed to ride in e lanes in QLD now?????

    What's the ticket say?

    "Riding on road shoulders and kerbside

    On major roads, such as motorways, freeways and highways where the speed limit is 90km/hr or more, a rider who holds an open licence for riding a motorcycle (including RE and R open licence holders) may ride past stationary or slow moving traffic at speeds not greater than 30km/hr on the road shoulder (the sealed area of a road to the left or right of an edge line) or in an emergency stopping lane. A motorcycle rider is required to give way to cyclists or motorcycle riders already on the road shoulder. Riding on a road shoulder is not allowed on roads with lower speed limits where there may be more pedestrian activity and it may pose a greater road safety risk to pedestrians."

    Edit: oh I get it now. The 60 km/h bit. Tough
    • Agree Agree x 1

  3. Yeah and the $341 fine is tougher considering it used to be $80
  4. What's your angle for court? It will be a tough one to argue in court. You were breaking the law. All you can do is plead guilty and hope for leniency on the fine, which will in all honestly probably end up costing more at the end of the day if you take a day off work.

    If you dont mind Im going to turn this into a new thread. You might get some better ideas and its quite topical, given the changes to the law.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. What a piece of shit cop. Take it to court mate. If everyone did the whole system would collapse
    • Agree Agree x 2
  6. I'm pretty sure in that scenario you should have been lane splitting between the cars and not down the side. The reasoning behind the no edge filtering is that in areas where the speed limit is below 90 kph there is s higher chance of a pedestrian walking out, a car pulling over or a parked one opening its door. I agree with smileedude on your options unfortunately
  7. Carman, car-man, car man. Never was there a more appropriate name for a supposed bike hater :)

    I’m new to Brisbane, but I believe we’re talking about the Gateway motorway – the Nudgee section is well known for horrible traffic, its badly designed with multiple lane reducing merges within a continuous 5km stretch. It effectively brings traffic to an angry and swervy halt each and every peak hour, with drivers chopping lanes at the drop of a hat to maintain progress.

    Is the 60km/h area the never-ending, zero progress road works section? It’s not somewhere I’d expect pedestrians or suburban risks to be present since it’s a fully-fledged highway with big, solid concrete barriers. Certainly, I think being on the e-lane is much safer and more practical than trying to filter between the cagers jostling between lanes indiscriminately.

    Sounds to me like a cop sticking rigidly to the letter of the law rather than using discretion to ‘serve the public’. I wish you the best of luck in court.

    Anyway, thanks for posting this, helps others to avoid falling into this rather blatant and unnecessary trap.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. #8 smileedude, Apr 16, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2015
    I'm wondering if you could argue that you had a valid reason for being in the breakdown lane, up until the 90 limit stopped. I'm not sure about breakdown lanes in QLD but I assume you are allowed to travel in them until you have a safe opportunity to re-enter traffic after having a valid reason for being in the lane. If the traffic was backed up you could argue there was no opportunity to re-enter traffic and you had to continue down the lane to avoid blocking the shoulder until the traffic gave you an opportunity re-enter. I'm clutching at straws and don't know the ins and outs of the legislation but perhaps it's an avenue to plead.

    It also might be worth contacting your QLD motorcycling advocacy body. I'm not sure who they are, but they may be willing to provide some assitance.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  9. What is the actual infringement for? Too fast or using the e lane? Or both?
  10. Yes, very predatory of the LEO to apply it where there are no parked cars or pedestrians, and where the speed limit is variable. But not a defence.
    Any chance that notification of the speed limit change was inadequate?
  11. Bike was overheating and required motion to be maintained so that the radiator had sufficient airflow? ;-)
    • Winner Winner x 1
  12. #12 smileedude, Apr 16, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2015
    Valid reason being that he was filtering legally until the speed limit change.

    "Penalties for breaking lane filtering rules

    New offences for lane filtering or riding on a shoulder incorrectly (for example, filtering at over 30km/hr or in a school zone during school zone hours) have been introduced, with an on-the-spot fine of $341 and 3 demerit points. There is a maximum penalty of $2,277 if the matter goes before a court."

    That is rough. You guys got the shit end of the stick with who ever negotiated that!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. There is almost zero probability of pedestrians or even cyclists being on that stretch of the gateway. Pretty sure there are big signs saying that it's illegal for them to be on the motorway.
    In any case I would check with a traffic lawyer but I think you're out of luck as the wording of the law is pretty clear in this instance. I totally get where you are coming from though, as there is pretty much zero danger to the public in that area and no greater risk to yourself than being on a 90km/h stretch of road but magistrates won't care about that. They will take their interpretation of the law into account not what it was written in the spirit of. I wish you luck.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Hey guys. Cheers for the responses.
    Carman the copper was pulling every one over just meters before the commencement of the 'off ramp' to the service station nb. I was thinking of saying in court that I was nearly out of fuel and had been sitting in traffic for 10 min and was worried I would stall in the traffic if I ran out of fuel before the entry lane to the servo. Think its a Shell servo there. It may work it may not. Chances are it wont and yeah, it'll probably cost me more in the long run if I lose and have to pay court costs etc.
    He had 3 bikes pulled up in front of me and while he was booking me he pulled another 4 over. $341 each. You do the maths and tell me its not f%#king revenue. (sorry, little spit there)
    Also while he was booking me a number of bikes were lane splitting between the cars (between the right land and middle lane mainly). I said what about them and he said I was an idiot if I thought he was going to walk out in to the traffic and plus they may of been changing lanes legally. Also a few riders were way over on the right shoulder and he said he couldn't do any thing about that either so I guess then what I learnt from all of this is, ride on the right shoulder (if its safe to do so of course and watch out for debris) and not the left. Cant say actually that I have ever seen any cops waiting on the right shoulder anywhere for bikes. Not sure if anyone else has?
    The fine has on it: Code 3681 UNLAWFUL EDGE FILTERING
    Just think it sucks when the traffic is stopped or going at a snails pace and we all ride along the edge/shoulder of the road sensibly when its nearly 2m wide and you get booked. Done it before over the years and a copper on a bike actually pulled up to me at the next set of light and said just be careful doing that. Some cops will book you for it and that was before the new laws and off he rode.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. I'm no expert about court proceedings, but I would imagine that Judges would hear excuse after excuse and get pretty tired of them - and above all hate being lied to. (And they're probably good at picking it too)...

    My guess is that you'd have more chance being honest with a judge - than trying to be clever and make up an excuses. (If you have a chance that is) In fact, I wonder if it would be the the same here too. ie: in your OP you are honest, admit you got caught out by a change in zones that made it legal to illegal just moments prior, and as such the replies are people feeling for you because it was bad luck. Because the limit just changed. However if your OP was along the lines of yeah the limit was changed, but you were low on fuel, etc - you may even have had some different attitudes in replies here than what you've got for being honest.

    It sucks the way you were done - the judge might see the same. I could be wrong, just puttin it out there...
    • Agree Agree x 1
  16. Also the judge will probably ask you for a receipt for the petrol or an account statement showing the transaction. If you cant provide that you will be in very shonky looking ground.

    As I said previously notify your motorcycling body. They may give you some free legal advice on the matter.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  17. Yeah good points guys

    Cheers for the input :)

    Just pissed off at the severity of the fine
  18. The issue here is that the way the rule is written is to permit "edge filtering" based on speed limit, but we all understand that speed limit is really only a proxy for what actually matters, which is that the road is a limited access road with little or no pedestrian or bicycle traffic.

    This is a necessary trade off, because everyone (riders, police, judges) need a very clear indicator of whether a road is eligible for edge filtering, otherwise the rule is too tricky to apply.

    A similar case occurs with the variable speed limit signs on some motorways which lower the speed limit below 90 when there is too much traffic (thereby making edge filtering illegal, despite the fact that this is precisely the sort of time when edge filtering is necessary).
    I already wrote to TMR about this inconsistency and they said that they will consider the matter when the rules are being reviewed. Whatever that might mean.

    But in the meantime the rules are what they are and I wouldn't want to be the one in court trying to argue my way out of that fine.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Your argument should be along the lines of, the filtering regulations are brand new and while they are mostly well written, like with any law they have some teething issues. To follow the rule to the letter you would have been required to stop at the speed limit change and re enter stopped traffic. This presents several issues. 1) drivers when stopped in queue don't generally like giving room to riders filtering. They can see the action as pushing in and refuse to make space and it can sometimes even lead to road rage. It is much safer to either get to the front of a queue where your acceleration can get you ahead or reenter slow moving traffic. Especially when drivers are already on edge due to significant delays 2) Stopping at this point would create a risk of getting rear ended from riders. 3) it reduces the effect of the congestion reduction the laws were intended to create as you are causing vehicles to wait longer at a bottle neck. You decided that the more sensible thing to do was continue down the edge as there are no pedestrians on this road, what the edge rule was intended to protect. The officer knew many riders would do this for these reasons and has positioned himself in a way that fines people an extrodinary amount for doing something that poses zero risk to yourself or others in what can only described as revenue raising and not serving the best interest of the public.
    • Like Like x 6
    • Agree Agree x 2
  20. I agree Smillee, but would a magistrate really apply discretion to dismiss a charge on common sense alone when the application of the law is clear cut?
    The law is clearly imperfect, but judges can't change laws.