OK, so I passed my test in December 08. Haven't driven again until today, 15th March. I was doing my pass plus today, basically a small course where you do more advanced stuff that you don't do in the standard test, and then you get a bit of money off the insurance as well as more experience. All went fine despite the fact I hadn't driven for 3 months, actually seemed like I'd been driving every day, was a bit surprised, and when we got to the half way point, to turn back, I was quite happy. Half way back it started to get dark, but I've done loads of night driving before so that was fine. Then, we hit a 50 mph limit. This went on for at least 15 minutes, along a quiet road, at the same steady speed, but it was slowly getting darker. Eventually it was very dark and could only really see what the lights showed me. Going along quite nicely, and my instructor suddenly says 'It's 40 along here!".
*slams on the brakes*
So yeah, there's me, first time driving for 3 months, doing 50 in a 40. But it's total shit really. For one, the 50 limit had been there for ages, and there was no real reason at all for it to be a 40 at that point. About 100 metres after the camera, it went back to a 50, there just seemed to be this random 40 mph limit in the middle of the 50. Plus, there was only one small sign saying the change of speed, which I didn't see, there weren't any markings on the road to indicate the change, and the camera was extremely close to the start of the 40 zone. Now, you may think that I should have seen the sign and braked. Well, yes, if there was any light, I'd have seen the sign, and would have slowed down. But there wasn't any light. Even if I did see the sign, I wouldn't have had enough time to slow down from 50 after seeing it to be going slow enough for the camera because it was so close to the sign. The guy behind me was going just as fast, he couldn't see the sign either, he only knew about it because it flashed for me.
Now, there's every chance the camera had no film in it. That's what I'm hoping for. If not, when they send the letter to ask who was driving, my instructor will obviously say it was me, but he'll also write a letter trying to get me off it. I do everything else fine, very careful, take note of speed limits, but in this case, the signs were very unclear. Plus we were talking about stuff to watch out for when it's dark, which is kinda ironic.
I guess I'll have to see what happens. If they do follow it through, I'm quite certain they'll let me off but I'm not looking forward to finding out.