Private speed cameras installed in private cars: are they legal?

Private speed cameras installed in private cars: are they legal?

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The controversy is served. Talking about radars these days is doing it from Toledo: the Castilian-La Mancha province grabs headlines due to the debate generated around this type of device. A video, broadcast through social networks, reveals that a private company has installed a mobile radar in a private car to carry out surveillance tasks: is it legal? We spoke with the DGT to obtain an answer.

Let’s go with the facts and head towards the N-Va, as it passes through Cazalegas (Toledo). This part of the road is the responsibility of the town council of that town, so traffic work is usually carried out by both the Civil Guard and the Local Police. As reported in NowCLMfrom time to time and with some frequency, local agents have carried out speed controls in this location with a radar approved and rented by the corresponding consistory.

This section has different speed limits: from the motorway and up to the bridge over the Alberche river, you have to drive at 80km/h and, furthermore, it is forbidden to overtake because it has always been a dangerous area. However, at the exit of the aforementioned bridge to Madrid, the maximum is 60 km/h.

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This time, however, the vehicle on the shoulder was a private car equipped with a mobile radar: This is the first key to the controversy. A citizen observed him and, recording all his steps, asked him who he was and what he was doing. We already know the answer to the second question, the first one remained to be resolved: the individual claimed that he works for the Cazalegas City Council.

outsourced controls

The truth is that, as AhoraCLM also points out, the Cazalegas City Council would have decided to outsource the speed controls. A point that has confirmed The Voice of the Tagus: said media, citing sources from the local council, points out that it would be a radar operator “duly authorized, approved and legal”.

The device belongs to Vialine, the company in charge of providing this surveillance service to the Cazalegas City Council “through safe and effective procedures.” They capture the infractions and it is the consistory that is in charge of imposing the sanctions drivers who do not respect the speed limits. Therefore, they could hire a private company… although, as we are going to explain now, those in charge of handling the devices must be law enforcement officers.

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And the person who ran it? Here comes the second key to the controversy. According to collect 20 minutesthe mayor of Cazalegas has issued a statement where denies that the driver works for the consistory: It also ensures that it has no contractual relationship with them.

So things, They are investigating whether it is someone linked “with a company that provides a municipal service or concession” or what relationship it has with traffic control services. On the other hand, they are studying the recording to specify the kilometer point and when they collect all the necessary information, within their powers, they will implement the necessary instructions to clarify what happened.

Legal radars, approved and managed by an agent

In Diariomotor, we have contacted the DGT to find out what is allowed and what is not in this story. In principle, the consistory can outsource speed controls through a private company, as long as certain requirements are met.

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Which? The radars used in this work must be legal and be approved by the National Institute of Metrology. At the same time, they have to be regulated and calibrated by Ministerial Order ITC/3123/2010. If they do not meet all these conditions, the images that capture speeding will not be accepted as evidence of the offense and the fine may be cancelled.

There would be one last point, which is pointed out to us by the General Directorate of Traffic: radars have to be manipulated, always, by an agent of authority. Or what is the same: a member of the Civil Guard, the Local Police or any regional police force.

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