A DRIVER who was caught out twice at a bus gate is attempting to sue the Department for Transport.

Simon Collyer, from Colchester, was fined twice for unknowingly driving through the bus gate in Hythe Station Road in 2017.

He managed to successfully appeal the first case and has re-appealed the second case.

Simon, founder of the Association of Pension and Benefits Claimants, a community interest comapny, says there needs to be more information about bus gates and how to spot them.

He said: “I don’t usually go that way through Colchester. The first time I drove through the bus gate, the lights were not working and I won that case at appeal.

“The second time I came back the other way and there is a whole forest of signs where lots of people are getting caught. I am still fighting that case.”

He said in the Highway Code there is not enough information about bus gates.

He said: “The Government failed to include bus gates in four documents including the Official Highway Code and Know Your Road Signs.

“You might ask how can driving instructors teach student drivers properly when bus gates are not included in the Highway Code?

“Many driving instructors I have spoken to don’t know what a bus gate looks like, unless you live near one no one has heard of them.

“That’s entirely wrong, I feel like it’s entrapment and it’s not fair.”

A Freedom of Information request to Essex County Council revealed between November 2017, when cameras were activated at the Hythe bus gate, until the end of January, a total of 18,017 fines were issued. A total of £434,694 has been collected in penalty charge notices.

At the time an Essex County Council spokesman said: “There are numerous signs at the bus gate and also well in advance of the bus gate on the surrounding road network and also the words Bus Gate are painted on the road.”

“The figures are not ‘disproportionate’ against other sites we enforce.

“It may be some drivers are not observant enough or do not understand the signs, but many drivers just decide to “chance it”.

“We all know level crossi

ngs are dangerous places and also help with bus punctuality. It is not designed or intended as a ‘money making’ scheme.”

The case will be heard at the Ipswich Hearing Centre on May 17.

The Department for Transport said it prescribes signs to indicate bus gates in the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2016.

Guidance on the use and placing of those signs is

given in the Traffic Signs Manual.

It said it is for the local authority to apply this guidance to its own roads, and to ensure any restrictions they implement comply with legislation.

If an active legal case is underway the Department for Transport cannot comment.