Insurance cover to drive third party vehicles on a public highway / moving vehicles / ETC

The request was refused by West Midlands Police.

Dear West Midlands Police,

I spoke to Susan Brown on the telephone a short while ago regarding this matter. Following our chat, please find my request for stored information below.

Section 143 of the RTA states:
---
143 Users of motor vehicles to be insured or secured against third-party risks.

(1)Subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act—
(a)a person must not use a motor vehicle on a road [F1or other public place] unless there is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle by that person such a policy of insurance or such a security in respect of third party risks as complies with the requirements of this Part of this Act, and
(b)a person must not cause or permit any other person to use a motor vehicle on a road [F2or other public place] unless there is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle by that other person such a policy of insurance or such a security in respect of third party risks as complies with the requirements of this Part of this Act.
(2)If a person acts in contravention of subsection (1) above he is guilty of an offence.
---

Following receipt of your insurance certificate to my previous request, it is clear that your officers are not insured to drive a vehicle which is neither owned by or the legal responsibility of the Chief Constable and/or The Police and Crime Commissioner.

(1) I therefore ask for you to provide information which would outline that officers are insured to drive a member of the public's vehicle on the road (or in any other 'Public Place').

I am aware of S.144(2) -
-----
(2)Section 143 does not apply—
(a)to a vehicle owned—
(i)by the council of a county or county district in England and Wales [F4the Broads Authority], the Common Council of the City of London, the council of a London borough [F5 a National Park authority], the Inner London Education Authority [F6the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority,][F7an authority established for an area in England by an order under section 207 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 (joint waste authorities)][F8, a joint authority (other than a police authority) established by Part 4 of the Local Government Act 1985, an economic prosperity board established under section 88 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 or a combined authority established under section 103 of that Act,]
(ii)by a [F9council constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994 in Scotland, or]
(iii)by a joint board or committee in England or Wales, or joint committee in Scotland, which is so constituted as to include among its members representatives of any such council,at a time when the vehicle is being driven under the owner’s control,
(b)to a vehicle owned by a police authority [F10 or the Receiver for the Metropolitan Police district], at a time when it is being driven under the owner’s control, or to a vehicle at a time when it is being driven for police purposes by or under the direction of a constable, or by a person employed by a police authority, F10. . ., or...
----

(2) Please supply information you store which outlines any possible excuse which might arise from S.144(2)(b) "when it is being driven for police purposes by or under the direction of a constable, "

(3) West Midlands police have a policy which outlines the procedures which must be followed when moving a vehicle (IE: get a tow truck, car goes on back of said truck, said truck either removes vehicle to impound, or places at a safe location to where said vehicle was lifted (*IE: in cases where the vehicle has a blue badge on display) - please supply a copy of said policy.

Obviously, I am aware that S.144(2)(b) would exempt the officer from the need for TPL insurance if the vehicle was causing an immediate danger/ dangerous obstruction to other road users (IE: A dumped car on a live motorway lane)... But in each case, when the officer intends to rely on S.144(2)(b) said officer must make adequate notes outlining his reasoning for exercising any perceived powers.

Furthermore, under section 12(1) of the Theft Act 1968:
"...a person shall be guilty of an offence if, without having the consent of the owner or other lawful authority, he takes any conveyance for his own or another's use, or knowing that any conveyance has been taken without such authority, drives it or allows himself to be carried in or on it."

I am also aware that section 12(6) allows a defence where the defendant believes that he has the lawful authority to do it or that he would have the owner's consent if the owner knew of his doing it and the circumstances of it. So, for example, if a vehicle was moved a short distance because it was causing an obstruction, those moving it might reasonably believe that they have lawful authority to remove the obstruction. (Also IE: A car dumped on a motorway.)

(4) Please provide a copy of the "Powers Cards" / "Booklets" (or other document) which is issued to your officers, which outlines the powers that they have, and they may use. If your PSCO's / Specials / ETC have separate power cards, then please supply a copy of each.

(5) Please supply a copy of WM Police's Public Liability Insurance Certificate, Employers Liability Certificate, and any other liability certificates you might hold, which have been in force between 3/4/15 and today (11/11/15) [some may have been renewed - such as your RTA Insurance pursuant to S.143 of the RTA which expired on 31.10.15 at 23:59 (A copy of the old document is on WDTK: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/b... ]

Yours faithfully,

Wayne Pearsall

Freedom of Information, West Midlands Police

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Freedom of Information, West Midlands Police

 

Dear Mr Pearsall

 

FOI Request Reference: 006222/15

 

Thank you for your request for information, received 12/11/2015.

 

REQUEST

 

Section 143 of the RTA states:

---

143 Users of motor vehicles to be insured or secured against third-party
risks.

 

(1)Subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act¿ (a)a person must
not use a motor vehicle on a road [F1or other public place] unless there
is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle by that person such a
policy of insurance or such a security in respect of third party risks as
complies with the requirements of this Part of this Act, and (b)a person
must not cause or permit any other person to use a motor vehicle on a road
[F2or other public place] unless there is in force in relation to the use
of the vehicle by that other person such a policy of insurance or such a
security in respect of third party risks as complies with the requirements
of this Part of this Act.

(2)If a person acts in contravention of subsection (1) above he is guilty
of an offence.

---

 

Following receipt of your insurance certificate to my previous request, it
is clear that your officers are not insured to drive a vehicle which is
neither owned by or the legal responsibility of the Chief Constable and/or
The Police and Crime Commissioner.

 

(1) I therefore ask for you to provide information which would outline
that officers are insured to drive a member of the public's vehicle on the
road (or in any other 'Public Place').

 

I am aware of S.144(2) -

-----

(2)Section 143 does not apply¿

(a)to a vehicle owned¿

(i)by the council of a county or county district in England and Wales
[F4the Broads Authority], the Common Council of the City of London, the
council of a London borough [F5 a National Park authority], the Inner
London Education Authority [F6the London Fire and Emergency Planning
Authority,][F7an authority established for an area in England by an order
under section 207 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health
Act 2007 (joint waste authorities)][F8, a joint authority (other than a
police authority) established by Part 4 of the Local Government Act 1985,
an economic prosperity board established under section 88 of the Local
Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 or a combined
authority established under section 103 of that Act,] (ii)by a [F9council
constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act
1994 in Scotland, or] (iii)by a joint board or committee in England or
Wales, or joint committee in Scotland, which is so constituted as to
include among its members representatives of any such council,at a time
when the vehicle is being driven under the owner¿s control, (b)to a
vehicle owned by a police authority [F10 or the Receiver for the
Metropolitan Police district], at a time when it is being driven under the
owner¿s control, or to a vehicle at a time when it is being driven for
police purposes by or under the direction of a constable, or by a person
employed by a police authority, F10. . ., or...

----

 

(2) Please supply information you store which outlines any possible excuse
which might arise from S.144(2)(b) "when it is being driven for police
purposes by or under the direction of a constable, "

 

(3) West Midlands police have a policy which outlines the procedures which
must be followed when moving a vehicle (IE: get a tow truck, car goes on
back of said truck, said truck either removes vehicle to impound, or
places at a safe location to where said vehicle was lifted (*IE: in cases
where the vehicle has a blue badge on display) - please supply a copy of
said policy.

 

Obviously, I am aware that S.144(2)(b) would exempt the officer from the
need for TPL insurance if the vehicle was causing an immediate danger/
dangerous obstruction to other road users (IE: A dumped car on a live
motorway lane)...  But in each case, when the officer intends to rely on
S.144(2)(b) said officer must make adequate notes outlining his reasoning
for exercising any perceived powers.

 

Furthermore, under section 12(1) of the Theft Act 1968:

"...a person shall be guilty of an offence if, without having the consent
of the owner or other lawful authority, he takes any conveyance for his
own or another's use, or knowing that any conveyance has been taken
without such authority, drives it or allows himself to be carried in or on
it."

 

I am also aware that section 12(6) allows a defence where the defendant
believes that he has the lawful authority to do it or that he would have
the owner's consent if the owner knew of his doing it and the
circumstances of it. So, for example, if a vehicle was moved a short
distance because it was causing an obstruction, those moving it might
reasonably believe that they have lawful authority to remove the
obstruction. (Also IE: A car dumped on a motorway.)

 

(4) Please provide a copy of the "Powers Cards" / "Booklets" (or other
document) which is issued to your officers, which outlines the powers that
they have, and they may use.  If your PSCO's / Specials / ETC have
separate power cards, then please supply a copy of each.

 

(5) Please supply a copy of WM Police's Public Liability Insurance
Certificate, Employers Liability Certificate, and any other liability
certificates you might hold, which have been in force between 3/4/15 and
today (11/11/15) [some may have been renewed - such as your RTA Insurance
pursuant to S.143 of the RTA which expired on 31.10.15 at 23:59 (A copy of
the old document is on WDTK:
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/b...
]

 

RESPONSE
The information requested above is exempt by virtue of S14 (1) (Vexatious
Requests). Section 14 (1) does not oblige a public authority to comply
with a request if that request is deemed to be vexatious. To determine
whether the request is likely to cause a disproportionate or unjustified
level of disruption a number of factors have been taken into
consideration. These have been outlined below.

The context and history of the request has been taken into consideration
when making a decision as to whether Section 14 applies. The majority of
requests that you have made are in relation to a specific incident. The
requests regarding TASERs, confiscated property, and fleet vehicles have
all been considered when making this decision.

Since April 2015, you have made a total of 11 requests for information and
9 requests for internal reviews of those decisions. Although we
acknowledge that we have struggled to meet the regulatory timescales and
that you are within your rights to request that a review is reconsidered,
the sheer amount of correspondence has placed a considerable burden on
WMP. We also note that despite reporting a number of requests to the ICO,
you have not waited for a response to that complaint before making this
request, which is substantially similar in nature.

As stated in various correspondence and annotations on What Do They Know
(WDTK), the purpose behind many of your requests for information is to
collate evidence regarding a specific incident so that you can provide it
to a solicitor. These long and frequent requests are placing a burden on
WMP’s resources. This recent request is contributing to that aggregated
burden.

The indicators outlined in the ICO guidance entitled ‘Dealing with
vexatious requests (Section 14)’ have been taken into consideration when
establishing whether this request is vexatious. Please note that this is
not an exhaustive list, neither does the request have to contain elements
of all the indicators outlined.

I have noted the language used in your requests which is frequently
condescending and antagonizing towards staff members. Please see the email
correspondence for request 3373/15 “Do you feel a little silly now?” and
the request for internal review 4004/15 “You may *Think* you know the
law…”Oh my… Police staff clearly don’t know the “law”…”.

You are using the FOI process to make accusations about the organisation
and its employees, and to advance a personal agenda by making a “point” in
a public forum. This is clearly stated in correspondence for request
3372/15 where you state “I therefore, raise a public request, so the
public can see that you are trying to withhold information”.  You have
frequently accused the WMP of a “cover up” in correspondence and
annotations on WDTK. For example, the annotation for 3369/15 states “I’ve
got a funny feeling that WM Police don’t want to disclose this information
to me … I wonder why… Could they be hiding the face that a certain police
vehicle does infact have CCTV / Video Recording”. WDTK have also removed
accusations about a specific officer and other of our employees due to its
potentially defamatory nature.

As mentioned above, you are using the FOI Act to collate evidence for use
in a trial. If you are unhappy with the conduct of WMP officers there are
procedures in place to address this. You can make a complaint to the
Professional Standards Department, and if you are not happy with the
outcome of that investigation, then you can make a complaint to the
Independent Police Complaints Commission. Links to more information have
been included below:

 

[1]http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/conta...

 

[2]https://www.ipcc.gov.uk/

 

 

Your attention is drawn to your right to request a re-examination of your
case. Please note that such an appeal must be received within 20 working
days of the date of this correspondence. Any such request received after
this time will only be considered at the discretion of the FOI Unit.

 

If you require any further information, then please do not hesitate to
contact me.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

 

 

Sent on behalf of Courtney Martin

Freedom Of Information Unit

Corporate Communications

To report crime and anti-social behaviour which does not require an
emergency response, please call 101. In an emergency, dial 999

 

Ext: 801 6196

[3][email address]

 

Website:    [4]http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/ 

Twitter:       [5]www.twitter.com/wmpolice 

Facebook:  [6]www.facebook.com/westmidlandspolice

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Flickr:         [8]www.flickr.com/westmidlandspolice 

 

- [9]View all our social network links

 

 Our vision: Serving our communities, protecting them from harm

 

 

 

 

This email is intended for the addressee only and may contain privileged
or confidential information. If received in error, please notify the
originator immediately. Any unauthorised use, disclosure, copying or
alteration of this email is strictly forbidden. Views or opinions
expressed in this email do not necessarily represent those of West
Midlands Police. All West Midlands Police email activity is monitored for
virus, racist, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate activity. No
responsibility is accepted by West Midlands Police for any loss or damage
arising in any way from the receipt or use of this email.

References

Visible links
1. http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/conta...
2. https://www.ipcc.gov.uk/
3. mailto:[email address]
4. http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/
5. http://www.twitter.com/wmpolice
6. http://www.facebook.com/westmidlandspolice
7. http://www.youtube.com/westmidlandspolice
8. http://www.flickr.com/westmidlandspolice
9. http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/conta...

Dear West Midlands Police,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of West Midlands Police's handling of my FOI request 'Insurance cover to drive third party vehicles on a public highway / moving vehicles / ETC'.

Your obligations require you to now conduct an untethered review...
You clearly outline yourselves the genuine nature of my request... I will proceed to the information tribunal should it be necessary...

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

Yours faithfully,

Wayne Pearsall

Freedom of Information, West Midlands Police

Dear Mr Pearsall

 

FOI Internal Review Reference: 007532/15

 

Thank you for your correspondence, received 09/12/2015 where you requested
West Midlands Police to review its response to your request for
information concerning 'Insurance cover to drive third party vehicles on a
public highway….’

 

REQUEST

 

Section 143 of the RTA states:

---

143 Users of motor vehicles to be insured or secured against third-party
risks.

 

(1)Subject to the provisions of this Part of this Act¿ (a)a person must
not use a motor vehicle on a road [F1or other public place] unless there
is in force in relation to the use of the vehicle by that person such a
policy of insurance or such a security in respect of third party risks as
complies with the requirements of this Part of this Act, and (b)a person
must not cause or permit any other person to use a motor vehicle on a road
[F2or other public place] unless there is in force in relation to the use
of the vehicle by that other person such a policy of insurance or such a
security in respect of third party risks as complies with the requirements
of this Part of this Act.

(2)If a person acts in contravention of subsection (1) above he is guilty
of an offence.

---

 

Following receipt of your insurance certificate to my previous request, it
is clear that your officers are not insured to drive a vehicle which is
neither owned by or the legal responsibility of the Chief Constable and/or
The Police and Crime Commissioner.

 

(1) I therefore ask for you to provide information which would outline
that officers are insured to drive a member of the public's vehicle on the
road (or in any other 'Public Place').

 

I am aware of S.144(2) -

-----

(2)Section 143 does not apply¿

(a)to a vehicle owned¿

(i)by the council of a county or county district in England and Wales
[F4the Broads Authority], the Common Council of the City of London, the
council of a London borough [F5 a National Park authority], the Inner
London Education Authority [F6the London Fire and Emergency Planning
Authority,][F7an authority established for an area in England by an order
under section 207 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health
Act 2007 (joint waste authorities)][F8, a joint authority (other than a
police authority) established by Part 4 of the Local Government Act 1985,
an economic prosperity board established under section 88 of the Local
Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 or a combined
authority established under section 103 of that Act,] (ii)by a [F9council
constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act
1994 in Scotland, or] (iii)by a joint board or committee in England or
Wales, or joint committee in Scotland, which is so constituted as to
include among its members representatives of any such council,at a time
when the vehicle is being driven under the owner¿s control, (b)to a
vehicle owned by a police authority [F10 or the Receiver for the
Metropolitan Police district], at a time when it is being driven under the
owner¿s control, or to a vehicle at a time when it is being driven for
police purposes by or under the direction of a constable, or by a person
employed by a police authority, F10. . ., or...

----

 

(2) Please supply information you store which outlines any possible excuse
which might arise from S.144(2)(b) "when it is being driven for police
purposes by or under the direction of a constable, "

 

(3) West Midlands police have a policy which outlines the procedures which
must be followed when moving a vehicle (IE: get a tow truck, car goes on
back of said truck, said truck either removes vehicle to impound, or
places at a safe location to where said vehicle was lifted (*IE: in cases
where the vehicle has a blue badge on display) - please supply a copy of
said policy.

 

Obviously, I am aware that S.144(2)(b) would exempt the officer from the
need for TPL insurance if the vehicle was causing an immediate danger/
dangerous obstruction to other road users (IE: A dumped car on a live
motorway lane)...  But in each case, when the officer intends to rely on
S.144(2)(b) said officer must make adequate notes outlining his reasoning
for exercising any perceived powers.

 

Furthermore, under section 12(1) of the Theft Act 1968:

"...a person shall be guilty of an offence if, without having the consent
of the owner or other lawful authority, he takes any conveyance for his
own or another's use, or knowing that any conveyance has been taken
without such authority, drives it or allows himself to be carried in or on
it."

 

I am also aware that section 12(6) allows a defence where the defendant
believes that he has the lawful authority to do it or that he would have
the owner's consent if the owner knew of his doing it and the
circumstances of it. So, for example, if a vehicle was moved a short
distance because it was causing an obstruction, those moving it might
reasonably believe that they have lawful authority to remove the
obstruction. (Also IE: A car dumped on a motorway.)

 

(4) Please provide a copy of the "Powers Cards" / "Booklets" (or other
document) which is issued to your officers, which outlines the powers that
they have, and they may use.  If your PSCO's / Specials / ETC have
separate power cards, then please supply a copy of each.

 

(5) Please supply a copy of WM Police's Public Liability Insurance
Certificate, Employers Liability Certificate, and any other liability
certificates you might hold, which have been in force between 3/4/15 and
today (11/11/15) [some may have been renewed - such as your RTA Insurance
pursuant to S.143 of the RTA which expired on 31.10.15 at 23:59 (A copy of
the old document is on WDTK:
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/b...
]

 

RESPONSE

 

I have looked at your request again and consider it to be vexatious by
virtue of Section 14 (1) of the Freedom of Information Act.

 

Viewed in the context of the number of FOI requests and other
correspondence received by West Midlands Police (WMP), to comply with this
series of requests has placed a disproportionate burden on WMP.

 

In making this judgement on whether compliance with this request would
place a disproportionate or unjustified level of disruption, irritation or
distress I have taken account of Information Commissioner vs Devon County
Council and Dransfield. In that Tribunal Judge Wikeley quoted Judge Jacobs
in his ruling refusing permission to appeal in Wise v Information
Commissioner (GIA/1871/2011; EA/2010/0166):

 

“Inherent in the policy behind section 14(1) is the idea of
proportionality. There must be an appropriate relationship between such
matters as the information sought, the purpose of the request, and the
time and other resources that would be needed to provide it.”

 

The fact that there may be a purpose to your request does not necessarily
mean the burden is justified. In their guidance the ICO outline a number
of practical examples of scenarios where the value of the request might be
limited. Some of these are where the requester

 

o “Refuses an offer to refer the matter for independent investigation,
or ignores the findings of an independent investigation.
o Continues to challenge the authority for alleged wrongdoing without
any cogent basis for doing so
o Is pursuing a relatively trivial or highly personalised matter of
little if any benefit to the wider public”.

 

To be clear: if the numerous FOI requests that you have made had uncovered
any basis to your accusations then we would not be considering the
application of Section 14.

 

The ICO Guidance encourages us to take into account the wider context of
your interactions with West Midlands Police. You have made various
frequent and overlapping requests. This current FOI request was made
before any judgement from the ICO regarding the various requests that you
have referred to them. I also note that when we have supplied data that
you find useful, you have asked for an Internal Review, questioning that
provision of data. 

 

The ICO guidance states that “if the authority’s experience of dealing
with his previous requests suggests that he won’t be satisfied with any
response and will submit numerous follow up enquiries no matter what
information is supplied, then this evidence could strengthen any argument
that responding to the current request will impose a disproportionate
burden on the authority”.

 

I have also taken into account the accusations you have made regarding WMP
Staff on the ‘What Do They Know’ (WDTK) website and associated comments. I
note that these comments have been removed by the WDTK team.

 

Therefore, for the following reasons I consider this request exempt by
virtue of Section 14(1) of the Freedom of Information Act.

 

o the number and nature of the requests that you have made
o the probability that you will not be satisfied with any data we supply
o the fact that you have not made use of the mechanism to have these
matters independently investigated
o the accusations and argumentative nature of your correspondence

 

Any future requests on this or similar topics are also likely to be exempt
and will not be responded to.

 

 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a
decision. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF

 

If you require any further information, then please do not hesitate to
contact me.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

 

Carl Bird

Freedom of Information Unit

Corporate Communications

To report crime and anti-social behaviour which does not require an
emergency response, please call 101. In an emergency, dial 999.

 

Ext: 801 6196

[1][email address]

 

Website: [2]www.west-midlands.police.uk
Twitter: [3]www.twitter.com/wmpolice
Facebook: [4]www.facebook.com/westmidlandspolice
YouTube: [5]www.youtube.com/westmidlandspolice

Flickr: [6]www.flickr.com/westmidlandspolice

 

[7]View all our social network links

 

Our vision: Serving our communities, protecting them from harm

 

This email is intended for the addressee only and may contain privileged
or confidential information. If received in error, please notify the
originator immediately. Any unauthorised use, disclosure, copying or
alteration of this email is strictly forbidden. Views or opinions
expressed in this email do not necessarily represent those of West
Midlands Police. All West Midlands Police email activity is monitored for
virus, racist, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate activity. No
responsibility is accepted by West Midlands Police for any loss or damage
arising in any way from the receipt or use of this email.

References

Visible links
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2. https://exchange.wmpad.local/owa/redir.a...
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