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Driver fined for blocking lane filterer

Lane filter Incident events

A driver who put his arm out the window to stop a Newcastle rider legally filtering through traffic has been fined, leading to a call to make motorcycle helmet cameras legal.

We first reported the incident in November, along with helmet-cam video evidence of the offence, and it became our most-read article of 2017.

Rider Harry Criticos says he has just received confirmation from NSW Highway Patrol Senior Constable Lee Darby that the driver will be fined.

The offence is: Rule 268 (3) Part of body outside vehicle window/door – $325 fine, 3 demerits.

When Harry first showed local police the video, they were not interested.

“No formal action will be taken as they could not identify the driver of the vehicle,” Harry told us in November.

“The owner of the car was not the driver and they will not tell the police who was the driver. They need to identify the driver to pursue the matter.”

Hotel parking complaints fined
Harry Criticos and his BMW R 1200 RT

Driver now fined

However, it now appears the HWP has been able to confirm the driver’s identity.

Harry says Lee told him:

The driver was spoken to regarding the traffic incident and he stated that he was the driver of the car at the time but he couldn’t remember what happened. He signed a legal document stating this and he has since been issued with a traffic infringement notice for the offence of part of body outside of window/door – Driver.

Now Harry is concerned that the fined driver may contest the infringement notice.

“But the video evidence will support the fine imposed,” Harry says.

“The message I got from this incident is rather than talking to general duties police, go directly to the HWP and discuss any traffic incident a motorcyclist finds themselves in, and the steps to take.”

Change helmet camera law

DayGlo Queensland Police helmet camera fined
Police in several states use helmet cameras, so why can’t we?

He says the incident is also an important example why state governments should amend the laws to allow cameras on helmets.

“If it wasn’t for my camera, I would have had no evidence of the incident and the driver would have gotten away with it,” he says.

“As it stands, I could prove what had occurred and the driver will subsequently suffer financially from their efforts to impede a motorcyclist. Hopefully, they have learnt their lesson.

“I would also like to thank Senior Constable Lee Darby of the Newcastle HWP for his efforts in trying to achieve an outcome and keeping me informed along the way.”

  1. Drivers defence statement
    I was giving him a high five
    I was signaling a right turn
    I was off my meds and not legally responsible.

  2. You’d think they also could have done him for Rule 125… Unreasonably obstructing drivers or pedestrians… :/
    Oh well, guess we need to be thankful they even bothered to follow it up at all…

  3. Owner of a vehicle, must identify the driver, of that vehicle, or recieves a fine, which I belive, is greater than the original offence

  4. “No formal action will be taken as they could not identify the driver of the vehicle,” Harry told us in November. ”

    The owner of the car was not the driver and they will not tell the police who was the driver. They need to identify the driver to pursue the matter.”

    Why is it then, that if another driver were to activate a speed camera in my vehicle, the penalty is issued to me until I sign a statutory declaration naming an alternate driver.

    1. This is not correct. There is a specific offence of “not supply details of driver”that can be formally demanded of the owner of the vehicle. It carries a hefty fine and the Big Bang is that it is a repeatable offence. Ie. each time the police make the demand the owner commits a further offence if s/he doesn’t supply the drivers details. I saw one bogan refuse 7 times and was fined a total of $3,500. Not much of a fine you might say, that was 1979 and the average wage was $180/fortnight.

    1. This is not the place for trolls
      They need to stay in their basements and shouldn’t irritate people who might report them to the child protection agency

  5. Justice is done! Now a new law needs to be introduced to make it illegal to impede a rider who is legally filtering.

    1. there already are, its called dangerous driving.. or in this guys case ” offense of part of body outside of window/door”

  6. If the various state governments had actually introduced the filtering laws properly via some kind of multi media advertising campaign when they came in this would be a non-issue.

    Many drivers dont relise that filtering is legal now.

    1. they did, i saw it on buses, radio and tv adverts… not sure what else they can do…. its up to the individual to take notice… and why even bother doing something like that unless you have a bad attitude with driving your car.. be it anger issue or selfishness issues….

  7. Excellent result. Now it needs to be extended to those car and truck drivers that deliberately move to block filtering motorcyclists off. Plenty of those in Sydney.

  8. first response by the police ” nothing we can do about it”… so predictably irritating

  9. Precious. Get over it, so you could not filter. I ride too and simply wait if I cannot get through. Are we gonna start complaining next because a car is not moved over enough to let us by. Everyone get over yourselves. I am a Ducati rider, so if I don’t mind waiting …. there are enough stupid tickets being issued without adding more. Please do not encourage the cops. As you cameras, just attach to something other than you helmet if you are worried about it

    1. The fact of the matter is the driver purposely stuck his hand out of the window to stop him from filtering.

  10. Harry Criticos has clearly identified himself & his BMW R 1200 RT illegally parked on the footpath obstructing pedestrian traffic.
    third pic from top.

    I’d like to thank in advance NSW Highway Patrol Senior Constable Lee Darby for demonstrating fair & even-handed enforcement of the law
    by swiftly issuing a parking fine to Mr Criticos
    & I look forward to reading confirmation this has occurred in an updated version of this article.

    1. You’re an idiot it’s parked in his driveway, he is in attendance of the vehicle and no pedestrian activity is being impeded. Nice try buddy, go crawl back into your hole.

      1. jacob, own goal is correct ,it is illegal to park where he is ,i know because years ago my car was booked outside my business premises parked on my driveway but partially blocking the footpath just as he has

          1. There’s absolutely nothing in the photo to suggest that Harry had left his bike parked on the footpath. The photo shows him in attendance of the bike.
            Harry, I thought you sold the RT and now have a GS????

  11. So if I’m in my car and have a dash camera set up and see a motorbike zoom past and weaving in and out of traffic I could go to the HWP and have that person cop a fine?

  12. I find it appalling that new drivers aren’t even being made aware that motorcycle lane filtering is legal. A look through NSW’s “Road Users Handbook” finds no mention of it whatsoever, the same goes for Victoria’s handbook, “The Road to Solo Driving”…. :/

  13. How lazy and crass of the police to want to drop matters because the owner of the vehicle “would not tell them” whom it was .
    That does not wash with speed camera photos because you the owner of the car are liable in default unless and until you tell them whom the driver at the time was.

  14. The driver was not fined for “blocking lane filterer” but as stated for “Rule 268 (3) Part of body outside vehicle window/door.” The video shows that the motorcycle completely passed the alleged attempt at blocking the lane filter i.e. the alleged offender did not succeed in blocking the rider from filtering. I reckon there would need to be a far more substantial action taken by someone to block a lane filterer than putting an arm out the car window when there is still plenty of room for the motorcycle to pass by. I don’t understand in what way this motorcyclist was prevented from filtering, given that he passed the alleged ‘block’ without a problem.

    1. Surely the car driver’s attempt at blocking is more than a mere technical offence (body part outside vehicle). It was a potentially dangerous act. It was indisputably an act carried out with the intention of interfering with another vehicle already in motion; whether to make it stop, or make it swerve to avoid collision.

      Not that it’s new! In old Melbourne, when I was a courier rider in the city, car drivers (and passengers) would open a car door to block your progress on a bike. In early 60s a Vincent rider, thus baulked, didn’t quite stop in time, his front wheel gently meeting the driver’s door. In his shock and confusion, he inadvertently opened the throttle, wrenching the car door hinges such that the door could not be closed. Leaving the car driver in shock and confusion at the intersection, the Vincent rider rode off into the sunset.

  15. Mark – the NSWPOL interpretation of Australian standards as they relate to helmet modifications is outrageous & worthy of appeal if anyone has been convicted in a summary hearing. Is there any appeal precedent that we can read?

  16. Filtering is legal, but if you can’t for whatever reason… cars too close, someone’s got an elbow out his window, just wait…. the beauty of a bike is that you’ll get past at some stage, and be long gone while he’s still in traffic….

  17. On a different note, I see that the Cop’s Camera looks mounted upside down, namely the wording on the side of the camera.
    I wonder is this correct with the image presumably replaying upside down ?

  18. My son was fined for: Motorbike rider edge filter unlawfully. It was as he was coming off the Moggill Rd Off Ramp in Indooroopilly Qld. He was not speeding and the police officer followed him the same way my son had gone with his motorbike, to fine him. He tried to get my son to admit he was speeding, which he was not and when that didn’t work, he started going over my son’s motorbike and trying to find things wrong with it. When he couldn’t find anything to fine him with, he then said it was illegal to edge filter and then fined him $378.00. This will now take my son over his limit of 12 demerit points in 3 years, so will have to go on a good behaviour agreement or lose his license for 3 months. Can we appeal this or it’s not worth fighting for it because he will lose and then be up for more money?

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