A number of motorists among 25,000 who were handed a fine after being caught out by a new bus lane have been told they no longer have to pay up.
Fifty-three drivers took their case to a tribunal after a single road traffic camera in Hemel Hempstead snapped 25,112 motorists over four months. They were each handed a £60 penalty notice by Hertfordshire County Council.
But the council failed to contest 53 appeals against the fine made to the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. It said it could not process the paperwork in time for the hearings, but there were fears that allowing the appeals to proceed might lead to claims that it was an admission the fines were invalid and it would be forced to reimburse the hundreds of thousands of pounds it received from motorists who paid their fine.
However, it did contest seven other appeals, with 2,029 are awaiting internal review, and it said there were no plans to reimburse other drivers.
The drivers allowed to ignore the fine will face the added bonus of not having to declare it to theircar insurance company, avoiding the possibility of an increase in premiums.
A council spokeswoman said there are no plans to reimburse the other drivers.
Copyright © Press Association 2011