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This was written by a lawyer to a bike group, but is also relevant to us 

THE DANGERS OF GO PROS

Hi All,

I am seeing a very disturbing trend of an ever-increasing number of riders and drivers being charged with additional offences after their go pros have been seized. But even more disturbing is the fact that other riders who may have nothing to do with the rider with the go pro are being interviewed by police as a result of what is seen on the footage.

I have had numerous matters where a person may spend the day riding backwards and forwards with there go pro videoing there heroics coming up behind other riders who unknowingly may be transgressing. The rider with the go pro is spotted at the end of the day by police and pulled over for some transgression that the officer has seen. The Go Pro is seized by police which they may, if appropriate do. Subsequently they play the video back at the station and then pay visits to anybody that they see on the video that the go pro rider may have come up against during the day or days.

The police will then attend the premises of the registered owners' of the bikes that they have seen on the videos and place a notice of demand asking that they identify who the rider was at the relevant time. Prior to answering that question you may wish to contact your lawyer and arrange to conduct that interview with your lawyer present. They often wont show you the video and you will have to take it on faith that you were the relevant bike that was seen on someone’s go pro footage. In the absence of your election the police have no evidence as to who the rider may have been (I would suggest you read my prior article on identity if you haven’t already). Some highway patrol officers are taking this go pro evidence and trawling through the footage and then charging riders with multiple speeding offences. This is not the rider with the go pro but others who may have been riding with him or her. Some riders are receiving multiple speeding tickets for one ride.

As a defence lawyer we would need to consider the legitimacy of the seizure of the go pro, keeping in mind that they possibly can seize it have they done it in accordance with the law?

Secondly does the go pro footage that police rely upon disclose the offence that the rider has been charged with? For example if the go pro rider is following another bike and the rider of the bike in front is charged by police with speeding how does the go pro evidence support the speed of the bike in front? It may be that the speedo of the go pros rider’s bike can be seen but then it would amount to whether the go pro rider is speeding to catch up with the bike in front or is keeping a consistent distance, and visual over a reasonable period of time. Similarly how do we know whether the go pro riders speedo is accurate? After all many of us change the sprockets of our bikes which can affect the speedo accuracy. Accordingly there are many factors in the go pro evidence that may be challenged.

So be aware of this danger and think twice before riding with a go pro.

The article as written is for your information and interest only. It is not intended to be comprehensive, and does not constitute and must not be relied on as legal advice. Please be aware that every case is different and the matters I am raising may not be of specific relevance to your situation but may have a general application and you must seek specific advice tailored to your circumstances. I will also gladly talk to anyone on the phone if confused or want clarification.

Chris Kalpage

Kalpage and Co Solicitors

kalpageandcosolicitors.com.au

0418211074

Kalpage & Co 24/7 Solicitors - 24/7 Legal assistance for all driving and criminal matters. Call now if you've been arrested or need legal help. Call Chris Kalpage on 0418 211 074.

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2 hours ago, Tips said:

Thanks it’s an interesting read and probably very relevant to some of the drives I have been on. Next SMT I’m on that has a car with a gopro,  fitted can take the lead!!👍👋

Good artical Steve.    SMT RULES state - 

  • There is to be no GoPro or other forms of video footage recorded on these events.
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6 minutes ago, 9fan said:

Good artical Steve.    SMT RULES state - 

  • There is to be no GoPro or other forms of video footage recorded on these events.

Yea, I know, but some not on PFA runs may be tempted to get their Spielberg on and potentially put non suspecting fellow drivers at risk.

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19 minutes ago, StevepGT3 said:

Yea, I know, but some not on PFA runs may be tempted to get their Spielberg on and potentially put non suspecting fellow drivers at risk.

I know you know, just reminding Tips in his use of SMT reference that the car wouldn't be taking the lead with the Go Pro.

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The same could apply to GPS units fitted to a vehicle.  Most have a a memory of speeds and location which can be downloaded and viewed with the appropriate software.  This could give an overzealous HP officer too lazy to actually go out and catch offenders in the act plenty to get excited about. 

The question of accuracy of speed detection would have to be explored.  Speed detection equipment has to be calibrated and certified to be useful as legally valid evidence   For police to use unregulated video footage as evidence seems to be highly hypocritical.  

If we are to be presumed innocent, it is up to the police to prove an offence. Surely this would require accurate evidence to be presented to support a charge.  Like the lawyer said, don't answer any questions without legal representation.  Careless answers have a way of tying a noose around your neck.

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I occasionally gopro interesting roads, usually on time lapse instead of full video recording.  It's an interesting dilemma as footage can also prove innocence (that's what dash cams are for), but can equally prove guilt.  Speedy removal of the memory card in the case of being pulled over is a good idea, but that's not always possible particularly in the case of a crash.

On a SMT the use of gopros isn't a great idea unless everyone agrees and is behaving accordingly.  Police or insurance companies can use footage to complicate otherwise straightforward issues.

And yes, helmet mounted gopros can cause added complications when it comes to safety.

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1 hour ago, Coastr said:

I occasionally gopro interesting roads, usually on time lapse instead of full video recording.  It's an interesting dilemma as footage can also prove innocence (that's what dash cams are for), but can equally prove guilt.  Speedy removal of the memory card in the case of being pulled over is a good idea, but that's not always possible particularly in the case of a crash.

On a SMT the use of gopros isn't a great idea unless everyone agrees and is behaving accordingly.  Police or insurance companies can use footage to complicate otherwise straightforward issues.

And yes, helmet mounted gopros can cause added complications when it comes to safety.

Agree Coastr, normal driving etc great idea.      But as far as SMT's go....definite "no no" as far as I am concerned.   

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