Double-decker bust! Driver, 51, is fined after he is caught with a wrecked Skoda precariously strapped to the roof of his car
- Glyndwr Wyn Richards, 51, told magistrates he only drove the vehicle 300 yards
- The bizarre incident was recorded on a CCTV camera in Glan yr Afon, Wales
- He pleaded guilty to using a vehicle with a load likely to cause danger of injury
A man was caught on camera driving with one car strapped to the roof of another to transport it on an industrial estate.
Glyndwr Wyn Richards, 51, was filmed at the wheel of a 17-year-old VW Passat with a wrecked Skoda Octavia perched precariously on top.
He was recorded on CCTV taking the vehicle to a scrapyard on the industrial estate in Glan yr Afon, near Aberystwyth, west Wales.
Richards can be seen rounding the corner of the entrance gate to the estate being followed in by a small white which was there to offer protection to other motorists, Aberystwyth magistrates court heard.
He drives slowly as he travels up a ramp as the car on top begins to bounce on the incline.
The vehicle stops and Richards ducks to get out of the driver’s door, wary of banging his head on the overhanging chassis.
He leaves the vehicles temporarily parked and walks into the office.
A short time later he returns and continues to drive in the double-stacked car out of camera shot.
A man was caught on camera driving with one car strapped to the top of another to transport it on an industrial estate in Glanyrafon, Wales
Glyndwr Wyn Richards, 51, told magistrates he recognised that it was a ‘stupid thing to do’ but had only taken it 300 yards
Richards, of Llanfarian, Wales, insisted there was no danger of the top car falling when he drove it on March 26.
He pleaded guilty to using a vehicle with a load likely to cause danger of injury.
He said it was out of character for him to do something like that but that there had been measures taken to ensure safety.
A court heard officers were tipped off after one PC received a WhatsApp message with a picture of the two cars.
Police then sought information from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency about regulations on vehicle loads and how items should be secured safely.
He pleaded guilty to using a vehicle with a load likely to cause danger of injury. He was given three penalty points on his driving licence and fined £80
A DVSA inspector who watched the footage said that even with a strap in place the load was not secure as the top car was not secured in all directions.
While the inspector recognised there was a van following the car to try to act as a safety check and provide protection for other cars, it was inadequate as there were still cars driving in other directions.
Richards, who represented himself, said: ‘It was a stupid thing to do obviously.’
But he added that the top car had been strapped down and that the stability had been tested by lifting the cars with a forklift truck.
He also said that he had only driven around 300 yards at five-miles-per-hour and that he had pulled in and stopped when he saw any other car on the road.
He insisted that ‘there was no way it was going to fall off’ but accepted he should have moved the car in a different way.
Richards said it was out of character for him.
While magistrates could have banned Richards from driving, they said that his lack of any previous convictions meant they felt a disqualification would be excessive.
Instead he was given three penalty points on his driving licence.
Richards was fined £80 and ordered to pay a £30 victim surcharge as well as £85 costs.
A spokesman for road safety charity Brake said: ‘This is incredibly dangerous behaviour which could have had potentially devastating consequences and has, quite rightly, been punished accordingly.’
A spokesman for Dyfed-Powys Police said: ‘Advice to the public is that when transporting vehicles it should only be done via specialist trailers with sufficient straps to fully secure the load to all corners.
‘Also extra entitlement may be needed on driving licences if the test was passed after 1997.’
Carrying heavy loads: Advice on using roof racks
Weigh everything before loading the roof rack as every car has a maximum permitted roof load.
Ensure that the roof rack itself is secure. A badly fitted or poorly secured rack is likely to damage the car and it may even come loose on the journey.
Make sure that everything is tied down as securely as possible. Items can often be lifted up by the air stream when the car is travelling at speed so it is best to secure them to both the front and back of the car.
If it is part of a long-distance trip, stop regularly to check that all the ropes, fixings and ties are still in place.
Make sure that the car’s tyres are inflated to the correct pressure for the load.
It is also important to remember that with the extra load, the car will take longer to slow down when braking.