I’m writing this post because I simply can’t believe the perfect storm of bad luck that’s hit me recently. It’s type or scream…
So, less than a week ago I received a traffic infringement notice. I’d been fined $207 for doing 65 km in a 60 km zone. Then today, I received a letter from VicRoads saying my car registration had expired on July the 16th, and I had until October to pay or my registration would be cancelled. Please note, my registration is not currently cancelled.
I was still going what the…? when I opened the second letter and almost had heart failure. It was a second infringement notice for being caught speeding while my registration was expired. This time the fine is for $826. WTF????
I immediately rang Vic Roads and was told that with short term renewals, they send me a letter 6 weeks before my registration expires, and a reminder 10 days after it’s expired. Had I chosen to be notified by email, they apparently send three reminders prior to registration expiring…
For those who have no idea what a short term renewal is, it’s simply a way of spreading car registration payments over four quarters instead of paying a huge lump sum once a year. As someone on a full age pension – roughly $900 every two weeks – being able to spread the payments evenly seemed like a wonderful idea. Except that four quarterly payments means four renewal notices per year. Four chances for that renewal notice to go astray.
The last renewal notice I received was in April. I paid it. I did not receive one for July. I did, however, receive the reminder sent 10 days after my registration expired. Guess what though? The speeding infringement was dated July 19. 3 days after the expiry I knew nothing about and 7 days before the warning letter arrived.
I was angry over the speeding fine because I know the spot where it must have happened. It’s either going up a very steep hill or doing down a very steep hill. If I was caught going up that hill I had probably taken a run at it; 30 year old Corolla’s need a bit of help. If it was going down the hill, you’re going to pick up speed even if you ride the brake. I imagine the company that has the contract to run the speed camera knows full well that that particular spot is as close to entrapment as you can legally get. And no, apparently the police don’t man the speed cameras any more.
So, a system that’s meant to make life easier for people on the lowest incomes has become a loaded gun just waiting to go off.
I honestly don’t know what to do. The Offspring wants me to fight it in court but…it’s my word against that of a whole system. I say I didn’t get the renewal notice; the system says I did. Or maybe it’s the hit or miss nature of it? I want to fight it, but what if I end up having to pay even more?
Apologies everyone. I just needed to vent. 😦