Dom Littlewood presents a programme following people whose job it is to hand out fines. Police are on the trail of a driver whose mobile phone use might cost him a fine.
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Never before have so many on-the-spot fines
been issued in Britain.
'We're going to be following the men and women who hand out
'over £30 million worth of tickets every month...'
-Round here, they are an absolute blight.
I'm up to 104 now.
That is disgusting.
Just walk away.
'..for behaviour that's downright dangerous...'
That was stupid for these sort of conditions.
Look at the mess you've created in the street!
-How is that our fault?
What is he doing?
'..well, plain silly.'
What a doughnut.
'We'll be revealing the cost of their bad behaviour...'
'..and how this could affect YOU.'
-I'll give him a punch.
-Do you want to see me kick off?
The police are on it.
The parking wardens are on it.
They should be thanking us for being here.
And I'm on it.
Careful, it's a 30mph limit here.
I'm Dom Littlewood,
and I'm on the spot.
This time, there's a fine in store...
Sounds like a 400 quid fixed penalty, please.
..for residents who throw out more than they should in Lancashire.
Which is, obviously, fly-tipping.
They're throwing the fines back in the parking warden's face in London.
This is something you need to argue with the council.
Very happy chappie.
'I'm on the spot with the cops as they find those dodgy drivers...'
It's just the way he's undertaken everybody.
It was crazy, wasn't it?
'..who throw caution to the wind.'
I'm in Wiltshire,
heading westbound on the M4 with traffic cop Jay Clifton.
Jay's brief? To find traffic offenders and fine them.
You see how he's going off the lane,
so he's still not in control of the vehicle.
It's evening rush-hour.
We're on the trail of a bloke who appears to be driving and dialling.
-Still doing it. Still doing it.
-Yeah, I got that one that time.
He's been doing that for a long way.
He must be having a full-on conversation.
I don't think he'll be getting off with a warning.
-That was pretty blatant.
-That was very blatant.
Driving whilst using the mobile.
Could this be a £100 on-the-spot fine?
On a motorway, that's so bad. That's inexcusable.
It's absolutely ridiculous.
Jay's put the follow-me lights on,
and now the driver's finally stopped using his phone.
We'll under the bridge stanchions - it'll be a bit safer for us.
-You leave your lights flashing on the back?
But this driver seems to think it's his van,
not HIM, that's the problem.
No, you drove past. You were doing this. Twice.
Jump out. I need to step over there where it's safer, OK?
Let's go round this way.
As I came past you,
I could clearly see you had your phone in your hand
and your finger was moving over it.
I used it. I don't...
Then I pulled over,
you went past me, I went past again to double-check on that.
Your hand was still doing this.
I have to point out it is an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone
You don't have to say anything...
The guy's been pulled over by Jay. We're on a motorway.
You can hear and see how fast this traffic's moving.
Can you explain to us what happened there
and what's happened?
I tried to put it on the sat-nav for an address in Swindon.
Why didn't you ask your friend, who's sitting alongside you?
I know. He's my...
-I don't think about that.
Let's take a look at Jay's options.
Jay clearly spotted the guy using his phone, and he hasn't denied it.
Will Jay let him off with a firm warning
or will it be an on-the-spot fine
Jay has made his decision.
What penalty have you received?
£100 and three points on my licence.
That is painful.
The insurance will increase and... Yeah.
The driver claims he wasn't making a call,
just using the phone as a sat-nav,
but using any hand-held device, whether as a phone or sat-nav,
is a motoring offence
and he's been hit with a £100 on-the-spot fine
and three points on his licence.
How do you feel about the officer
and the fact that he's now given you this penalty and the points?
Do you hold any grudges about that?
It's absolutely right.
I can't be angry.
-You can just...
We're back on the road.
Hopefully, the van driver will carry on his journey, £100 lighter,
but a whole lot safer.
His driving was affected so badly, it was blatantly stupid.
This was a clear indication
how using a hand-held device will affect your driving.
That guy was so distracted by his phone.
Twice you pulled over onto the hard shoulder. He went past you.
He didn't even realise.
His Friday has got off to a bad start -
three points, £100 fine.
No doubt his mate's going to give him a hard time,
-but he got what he deserved, didn't he?
In the district of Pendle, Lancashire,
sits Colne Cemetery, a place of rest.
But more recently, there's been some unwanted visitors
lurking round the gravestones.
Matty Hargreaves and Jeff Brown are environmental crime officers.
This tranquil graveyard on their patch
has been hit with a particularly toe-curling problem.
Don't want it spoiling, really.
You don't want dog foul all over a cemetery.
To keep dogs and their owners from doing the dirty on this sacred site,
there's a new law in place.
We issue fines to people
that allow their dogs to be off the lead in this cemetery.
It's a standard £75 fine.
Now it's time for Matty and Jeff to start the graveyard shift.
You don't want dogs running around,
especially if the owner's not in control of the dog
and they're running through somebody's funeral,
or somebody attending their relative's grave.
It's not really good.
And it's not long before they spot the first possible fine of the day.
There's the dog. Is he off the lead?
Hang on a minute!
There's the owner, and she's stuck to the rules.
Her dog's on a long leash.
False alarm! No fine for Matty and Jeff.
Everyone's been behaving themselves,
all the dog walkers we've seen have picked up.
That's a good thing.
Matty and Jeff are happy that all is well in Colne Cemetery
but, in town, it's a different story.
The fine for this is a £400 fixed penalty.
Matty has received a tip-off
about a large pile of rubbish in a back alley.
This is the pile here that we've been alerted to
that seems to have appeared out of the back yard,
which is fly-tipping,
you can't just put your waste where you want to put it.
A load of old house clearance rubbish has been dumped in a street.
Matty and Jeff need to find out who the culprit is.
It doesn't take a detective to work this one out.
-Let's move this out of the way. Hello.
Can you step out here?
The problem dumper lives right here.
Are you OK if we speak to you and your brother?
-Is that OK?
-She's been clearing out the yard.
How did that waste get from the backyard to be out here?
The woman claims the rubbish belonged to the previous tenant
and she was just getting rid of it
to make the yard usable for her kids.
Just moving it out onto the backstreet...
..it's still classed as fly-tipping.
You need to keep it in the backyard
until the man comes and picks it up.
The waste might not have been hers to start with,
but once she's handled the rubbish,
it becomes her responsibility.
So, will she get a fine?
Basically, before she even moved into the property,
-the garbage was there.
The only problem is it's waste that's been moved from the backyard
onto the backstreet by your sister.
The woman and her brother are offering to move the rubbish back
into the yard, but will that be enough?
If you could move it into the backyard,
then it's going to be a case of us
thinking how we proceed with it from here.
So, it's a difficult call. She's broken the rules,
but claims she didn't know them.
The problem becomes is, if everybody did it,
we'd have an epidemic on our hands.
Increased risk to public safety and public health.
Matty and Jeff report back to base
and present the case to their boss, David.
How have you got on?
So, the woman's moved the waste from previous tenant
out of her property.
In the eyes of the law, this is fly-tipping.
She's handled the rubbish, even though it wasn't hers.
The fine could be £400.
Head of the team David has got a tough decision to make.
The amount of rubbish that was there,
it's not acceptable for that rubbish to be there even for a day.
We don't expect the residents of Pendle
to have to put up with that.
It sounds like a 400 quid fixed penalty, please.
It looks like rules are rules.
She will get a £400 fine for fly-tipping.
But if it's paid within 14 days, it will be reduced to 200.
As soon as she starts moving it, she is the fly-tipper.
She is responsible for what happens to that rubbish.
There's no rest for this rubbish patrol.
They've just received a fresh tip-off.
Where to now?
Next, we've got another fly-tip.
It's apparently some bin bags.
Just go there and see what we can find,
see if we can find who's done it.
This time, a load of waste has been dumped in a car park.
If this proves to be fly-tipping,
then the culprit could face that £400 fine.
Just going to be a case of searching the bags,
seeing if somebody... whoever's dumped it
has slipped up and left something that
we can identify inside the bags.
-Matty is bag diving.
-It's just a case of finding something with
an address on it or something like that.
They're looking for receipts, letters,
basically a paper trail to lead to the culprit.
See what people throw away.
It can be quite interesting, quite funny.
Once you get over the smell!
What's not amusing is some of the things they find.
Now then, this is what we have to be careful for.
There's a syringe in there.
That one's not got a needle in it,
but it suggests that there could be needles in here.
I'm just going to change my gloves
to some more stab-resistant... resistant gloves.
You can't be too careful, you don't know what you're going to find
once you start going into bags.
He's spotted it. We're not taking any chances with it.
After some dangerous bag diving,
something promising for Matty and Jeff.
We've got...a driver's daily worksheet.
We've got a lot...
..of different addresses on here.
Just a case of maybe contacting them
and seeing if they can tell us who was delivering to these people
on that day.
Let's take a look at what Matty and Jeff have found.
Bags dumped in a public place
and paperwork that could lead to the culprit.
It could mean a fixed penalty of £400.
But there could be more.
If you went to court with it,
it would be a maximum of £50,000 or five years in prison.
It's just a case of actually catching somebody fly-tipping
that's the difficult bit.
This time, the evidence has led to a culprit and it's looking likely
that he will be hit with a £400 fine.
In north-east London...
..parking warden Kam Paul is on her beat.
Some people enjoy our company, some people like seeing us.
People hate us.
Drivers hate us, residents hate us, but the cats and dogs love us!
I love staying...
..at a location for a couple of minutes,
just stroking a cat or a dog - it's lovely.
That friendly welcome is respite
from the usual onslaught that's her patch.
There are certain areas where...
..residents aren't used to our presence.
So, because they're not used to our presence,
our presence isn't appreciated as much.
Yep. She's barked and growled at by the locals as she patrols,
looking for parking problems,
armed with the power to issue an on-the-spot fine.
I think every council should assign a dog for each CO for protection.
Kam has spotted a car parked on double yellows
and blocking the pavement, both fineable offences,
and they're not the only problem she's got with this motor.
Who's left this dog here?
Kam's not going to hit this pooch with a parking ticket,
but she has sniffed out the owner.
Is this you, boss?
How can you leave such a sweet innocent creature on its own
on the footway?
Oh! Are you not going to close the boot?
The driver's in a hurry to avoid a ticket and is making a getaway.
That's one way of dealing with it!
Now he could really be in the doghouse.
Not only is he on double yellow lines,
he's blocking the pavement.
And Kam's got photos as evidence.
Could it mean a fine?
Hang on a minute! He's back,
and that boot is still open with the dog in the back.
That is really bad, yeah.
What I don't understand
is why the driver, A, had to be parked opposite the cafe,
with the boot open, with the dog unattended,
while he's in there, having his breakfast.
What's it going to be, Kam?
I'm going to issue that.
First ticket of the day.
A £130 fine. The crime?
Fouling the pavement with his vehicle.
The dog was innocent.
A lot of people are under the impression that, if they drive off,
they'll get away with the ticket - that is not the case.
When they challenge it and say, "We weren't there",
we've got the photographic evidence to prove that they were.
That will end up coming through the post.
With a picture of the unattended dog,
which, personally, I think he should get another ticket for!
But here's another driver parked in the loading spot.
What proof have we got here?
It's definitely not a van or a HGV.
No-one loading or unloading,
and the driver is nowhere to be seen.
Is this going to be a fine?
She's written a ticket, and there it is.
Kam slaps on a £130 fine.
Oh, dear, here comes the owner, and he's not happy.
It's a ticket, sir. That's a loading bay.
He claims he was delivering.
This is not my rules, this is the council rules.
I didn't see any loading.
He says he was dropping off some small boxes.
Right, three little cartons are not to be delivered from a loading bay
by a vehicle of that size.
He claims it shouldn't matter what he's delivering.
Right, sir, this is something you need to argue with the council.
Uh-oh. Now he's off-loaded his parking fine.
Very happy chappie(!)
But Kam's shift isn't finished yet.
Almost two hours expired.
The parking spots outside this parade of shops are available to all
but they're regularly hogged by the business owners.
The only issue we have in situations like this
is most drivers will park right in front of their business
so they will see us coming.
Council rules mean that Kam has to give the drivers ten minutes
from when she first spots an offending vehicle,
no matter how overdue it is.
It's called the observation period.
If the driver comes back within the ten minutes,
they are in their rights to jump in and drive off,
although they have a ticket that's two hours expired.
It's countdown for Kam.
On her radar, she's clocked two cars, both two hours overdue.
Do they belong to a shop owner?
And will they spot Kam on the street and beat the clock or get a fine?
And here's one of the business owners,
who wonders why THEY aren't given permits.
You need to speak to the council about that. I don't deal with that.
All I know is that both these vehicles are under observation
for having an expired ticket, so I need you to get another ticket.
This business owner isn't going down without a fight.
She claims other parking attendants don't mind
and lays the blame with Kam.
I can't just ignore it and, to be honest,
whether we're here or not, this is a pay and display,
you're supposed to buy a ticket, even when we're not here.
Another shop owner arrives to complain about
the loading bay regulations.
I can turn a blind eye if it's five, ten minutes,
but when I turn up and both your tickets are two hours expired...
So, what's it going to be?
Although the tickets are two hours overdue,
the owners made it out to their cars
before the observation period was over.
The result, no fine, but a headache for Kam.
Vehicles that have got tickets expired and they're still coming out
saying, "You're harassing us, we're a business."
Even after having two hours' free parking,
they still don't want to have to buy any more tickets.
If anything, we're not coming round enough.
I think we should come round a lot more.
With all due respect, we all pay to park.
Just because you have a business
does not mean that you can park for free.
I'm in Wiltshire, joining traffic cop Sergeant Warren Knight
out on patrol on the region's busy motorway network.
With the power to issue on-the-spot fines for a whole host of motoring
offences, I'm expecting it to be a busy shift.
-What motorway are we on?
We're going in towards London from Bristol.
And within minutes, we pass a motorist who looks like he's not
concentrating on the job in hand.
We've got a blue Vauxhall.
The driver was looking down into his lap.
Even though it became illegal to use your phone whilst driving over 13
years ago, it's a law that a busy traffic cop like Warren
often sees being broken.
So could this driver be facing an on-the-spot fine of £100?
Do you know why I've stopped you?
You've been texting. You're not allowed to use your phone.
The guy claims he was just checking his phone's battery levels.
Any interaction with your phone can have an impact on how you drive, OK?
What a lot of people don't realise is, just using the phone for anything,
whether it's sat-nav, checking it's charged or anything,
THAT'S when the offence occurs.
So he could be getting a ticket, for all I know.
Any physical interaction with his phone while driving is bad enough,
but that's not the only thing that could land him in trouble.
Is it your vehicle? All right,
this is the DVLA website
that you can use as an individual.
As you can see, it's been untaxed.
That is an offence.
One way or another, I think a fine could be on its way.
Turns out the guy hasn't got tax on the vehicle.
Now, that's not something which Warren will issue an on-the-spot penalty for,
but he will report the guy to the DVLA.
So let's take a look at Warren's options.
The guy appeared to be using his phone,
but claims he was just checking his battery levels.
But he's also driving without tax.
So is it going to be one, two or no fines for this motorist?
In relation to your phone,
you can't be looking at your phone
because, the split-second you do it,
the person in front brakes and you'll go into the back of them.
Yeah? And then that will cause a massive pile-up behind you.
You might be lucky and get away with it, but you might get a vehicle go
into the back of you. So you might survive the first impact,
but you might have a lorry behind you and he ploughs into you.
OK? The phone,
best thing to do is put it in the glove box and leave it there.
It's a warning for the phone, but what about that road tax?
That is an offence which I must caution you. You don't have to say
anything but it may harm your defence if you do not mention,
when questioned, something which you rely on in court.
Anything you do say may be given in evidence.
He will report the guy to the DVLA and the DVLA will automatically send
a penalty through to you. And trust me, they won't let it go.
That's probably an £80 fine he's going to get for that.
So Warren's not issuing anything.
But it looks like a fine from the DVLA
could be on its way in the post for this driver.
He said, "Oh, no. I was checking the battery level on my phone."
I've got no physical evidence other than me seeing him looking down,
so I've decided to deal with it by way of advice.
So for that guy there, he struck lucky with you, but unlucky with
-the DVLA because he's going to have penalties coming through.
We've only just got started again when Warren spots a car with a dodgy
-Can I have a vehicle check on the move, please?
He's just got an illegal numberplate. Completely illegal.
So much so, it's confused the ANPR system.
So it's the lettering on there, on his one?
Yeah. It's completely illegal.
If your car's reg doesn't adhere to government regulations,
you could face a very hefty fine of up to £1,000.
-I think it's so bad, he's probably going to get a ticket.
But just as Warren is about to pull this car over, another car catches
his attention, and this one is posing a direct threat
to the safety of the road.
Looks like the person with a slightly dodgy numberplate might be
getting away with it because what I think was a Bentley went past in the
middle lane at an extremely fast pace
and then suddenly swerved out into the outside lane.
So...they're almost certainly going to...
I mean, you can't even tell their speed at the moment, can you?
It's about 80-84. It's just the way he's undertaken everybody.
-It was crazy, wasn't it?
Time for the blue lights to go on.
I'm doing about 75, he's probably up, estimation, I would say,
probably between 80 and 85mph.
That's based on how I'm accelerating.
They obviously know it's them, don't they?
Straight into the inside lane.
The supercar is going at super speeds.
Is the Bentley driver about to get a super-sized fine?
-Do you know why I stopped you?
-I was speeding.
-Are you in a hurry to get somewhere or...?
-I was, I'm afraid. Yes.
I'm not sure that's going to work.
If you pop in the back of the police car, we'll have a discussion.
This guy's actions could be classed as driving without due care and
attention. The gentleman's just been pulled over because he was
undertaking at high speed in the middle lane, which annoys all of us.
I do quite admire the fact that, when the officer said to him,
"Do you know why I pulled you over?" He said, "Yes, speeding."
Put his hands up straight away, none of this, "No, what was it, officer?"
As to what happens now... Well, just going to wait and see.
So, what are Warren's options?
Driving without due care and attention
carries up to nine penalty points,
a whopping £5,000 fine
and a possible driving ban.
I wouldn't want to be in this driver's shoes.
Your driving style is indicative of somebody who's probably going to have an accident.
And if you're prepared to take the risk for yourself,
that's fine, but it's other road users.
I accept that the majority of the people in that lane
are doing between 80 and 85mph,
so you're probably thinking, "I'm just keeping up."
But obviously you'd been carrying far more speed because you were undertaking. Yeah?
What I propose to do, I'm going to give you a warning, OK?
You could be getting three points on your licence for due care and attention,
because that's what it amounts to.
-Is that fair enough?
-Warren's given this guy the benefit of the doubt.
You could say he's just had a very lucky escape.
So obviously you know why you got pulled over there.
Yes, I do. Yes. I was speeding and I...
..was somewhat impatient and in a hurry
and I undertook the car in front of me, yes.
Had you received the penalty and points, how would you feel about it?
I would have obviously not been happy, but it would have been fair.
I mean, I did something I shouldn't have done.
-Will it change the way you're driving?
Well, at the end of the day, I suppose that's what it's all about.
That gentleman there in the Bentley got away with a verbal.
I was surprised with that.
It was hard to determine the speed
because, when he passed me, I was doing 70, so it wasn't high,
high speed, but I felt it was enough to give him a warning.
When I said, "Look, if that van, which he undertook, had suddenly
"changed lanes, had changed their mind."
He said, "Well, I took a calculated risk that they wouldn't do that."
I said, "Well, that's your calculated risk,
"that's not the van driver's risk because they're the innocent party in this."
-His lucky day.
-His lucky day and certainly the Lexus's lucky day.
That's all for today. Join me next time when I'll be out with the men
and women who issue Britain's on-the-spot fines.
Dom is back with Wiltshire Police on the trail of a driver whose mobile phone use might cost him a hefty fine. We also follow parking warden Kam as she patrols the streets of Essex.