On our way home from a very pleasant afternoon spent celebrating a family friend’s wedding with a pinic at Burghley Park, Stamford – if you’ve never been go, it’s beautiful and free to enter – we had an encounter with the subject of this post.
Although today’s weather was not wall to wall sunshine, it still gave us enough excuse to drop the soft top on the Mini for the drive home, adding a nice finish to the day.
Turning on to Littleworth Drove towards Spalding Common, a red Ford van was coming towards us, roof festooned with ladders and driver’s window partially open. You might think the window was open because the driver liked to get some fresh air and keep alert whilst driving. This would be a commendable if it were true, but the opposite was the case, because this lout was breaking the first of several motoring laws, by smoking in what was a obviously a work vehicle and therefore technically a workplace. Such smoking had been banned since 2007 and includes shared work vehicles.
The van also had a company name on it, confirming its work van status. Looking at the video I’ve captured, it appears to start with a letter S, but the reflection and angle means I was unable to get more of it, more’s the pity.
What I did get however, is a very nice shot of the number plate. Which, just in case you have any difficulty reading it, is:
LG 07 GYR
The driver then broke another law, by not being in full control of his vehicle at all times. How could he be? As he saw us approaching him, in an open topped car, he appears to have gone out of his way to try to flick his burning cigarette end into our open car. Waving his hand out of the window of his moving vehicle for no good reason to deposit litter on to the public highway, makes that criminal offence three.
I got a good enough view of the offending butt and could see that it was actually a roll-up. He obviously needs to rip off a few more of his cash in hand customers, so he can afford to buy tailor mades from some of the dodgey people he knows who no doubt smuggle them in.
Arguably this louts most serious offence, if I could ever prove intent, would be the act of attempting to send a lighted, or even just hot cigarette butt into our moving vehicle. Any object intentionally thrown towards another vehicle is bad enough, but when that vehicle is open and that object could easily hit the driver in the eye, causing serious injury and a crash, that is assault with intent in my book.
If anybody recognises this vehicle and therefore the company that owns it, I would love to hear from you, in confidence of course. As a minimum, I am going to give a witness statement to our environmental enforcement officer, along with the photo. He will then write to this litter lout, warning him that what he did might only have been a cigarette butt, but it’s still littering. I should make it clear, I will not be given access to the information he uses, that would also be a criminal offence!