Photographing passing traffic

Photographing passing traffic

16 posts
6 Oct 2014
SandyCamel
Photographer
SandyCamel
Are there any problems / concerns that any-one can identify please I wonder  if a photographer stands by the side of a road,  photographing passing traffic ?

I am thinking that the pavement and road would be a public place, so no permission as such would be required ?

The only concerns I can think of is that it might be 'distracting drivers attention' just by being there (although no flash lights etc would be used) and that some people may be suspicious and resent this.


On the other hand I am thinking of 'fast moving traffic' - on a straight road where no-one can stop or do a U turn etc !


Any-way, I would be really grateful for any comments you may have about this.


Thanks as always.


Jonathan.




Posted 6 Oct 2014
Edited by SandyCamel 6 Oct 2014
AlletunYL
Photographer
AlletunYL
No,it's completely legal. I have done this before. Although if people complain you can always be warned, cautioned or convicted for Harassment, alarm and distress, as with any type of street photography
Posted 6 Oct 2014
SandyCamel
Photographer
SandyCamel
AlletunYL

No,it's completely legal. I have done this before. Although if people complain you can always be warned, cautioned or convicted for Harassment, alarm and distress, as with any type of street photography



Thank you for summing it up so well ! 




Posted 6 Oct 2014
Edited by SandyCamel 6 Oct 2014
marlhamphoto
Photographer
marlhamphoto
Just get a suitable disguise in order not to draw attention to yourself:

http://webmbassy.com/04348
Posted 6 Oct 2014
Edited by marlhamphoto 6 Oct 2014
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
Be prepared for drivers to beep, shout foul language, spit, swerve or throw cups of coffee at you.
Posted 6 Oct 2014
SandyCamel
Photographer
SandyCamel
Honestly - you all did make me laugh !

I think it is perhaps not one of my better ideas lol !

Posted 6 Oct 2014
artistoli
Photographer
artistoli
RedChecker

Be prepared for drivers to beep, shout foul language, spit, swerve or throw cups of coffee at you.


They do that to me when I walk down the road anyway. 

Posted 6 Oct 2014
Sdeve
Photographer
Sdeve
AlletunYL
No,it's completely legal. I have done this before. Although if people complain you can always be warned, cautioned or convicted for Harassment, alarm and distress, as with any type of street photography
It would need more than this to be convicted or cautioned. as for a police warning, usually not worth the paper it's written on.
Posted 6 Oct 2014
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
Sdeve

It would need more than this to be convicted or cautioned.


As long as someone has complained, the police are duty-bound to follow it up regardless of how petty it seems to be.

There's also a good chance that if someone has complained they'll likely have exaggerated their concerns (eg. saying you're blasting flash at cars, even though you're not.... I had something similar shooting in a tube station once), and so you've got an uphill struggle on your hands trying to convince the police otherwise.
Posted 6 Oct 2014
Edited by RedChecker 6 Oct 2014
Sdeve
Photographer
Sdeve
RedChecker
As long as someone has complained, the police are duty-bound to follow it up regardless of how petty it seems to be. There's also a good chance that if someone has complained they'll likely have exaggerated their concerns (eg. saying you're blasting flash at cars, even though you're not.... I had something similar shooting in a tube station once), and so you've got an uphill struggle on your hands trying to convince the police otherwise.
There is a huge step between the police 'following things up' and a conviction or caution (the same thing in practice, except you have to admit an offence to get a caution, and then you get a CRO number for life). Shooting in a tube station is not shooting in a public place, and British Transport Police have access to a lot of railway by laws that do not apply to street photography. In practical terms any confrontation with the police can be avoided by not spending too long at the location because they will not give priority to a call about a man standing by the roadside with a camera. I cannot see that this could ever be a real problem for the photographer, unless he is also going to be doing something that has not yet been mentioned that is at least stupid if not dangerous. People should never be afraid of speaking to the police. Officer: "What are you doing here, Sir?" (The word 'Sir' is included in case you get one of the few polite ones) Tog: "I'm taking photographs of cars and this road." Officer: "Why are you doing that, Sir?" Tog: "Because I want to, and because I can. If you like you can stand up the road a bit and I'll take pictures of the cars, the road, and a police officer. Otherwise, please leave me alone as you are distracting me from a perfectly lawful occupation." Smile at the nice officer then turn your back and get on with what you were doing. Leave your voice recorder running until he clears off.
Posted 6 Oct 2014
EllessePhotography
Photographer
EllessePhoto..
While I wasn't photographing cars, I had my camera on a tripod by the side of a road in Glencoe. The amount of speeding cars that "suddenly slowed" was huge, the angry reactions from the drivers as they realized it wasn't a speed camera after all was priceless.

Posted 6 Oct 2014
JeromeRazoir
Photographer
JeromeRazoir
AlletunYL

No,it's completely legal. I have done this before. Although if people complain you can always be warned, cautioned or convicted for Harassment, alarm and distress, as with any type of street photography


Sections 4 and 5 of the Public Order Act 1986. (I think '86, can't be arsed to check!). Very unlikely to attract an arrest under section 4 and section 5 requires a warning and then a continuance or repetition of the behaviour..

Nothing that I can think of in the Road Traffic Act UNLESS you stand on an island or a round about or distract the drivers. Do not get too close to the kerb. Remember that there are areas where pedestrians are not allowed. Motorways, obviously but manyh dual carriageways have a by-law forbidding pedestrians. Usually stated by a notice.

Also remember that the only lawful activity on a public highway is 'to proceed''. If you stop you are theoretically causing an obstruction and 'obstruction of the public highway' is an offence. You will almost certainly only be 'moved on' for that.

The best general advice when approached by a police officer is to be polite and friendly. Put the ball back in the officer's court by asking for advice.
Posted 8 Oct 2014
Kiboko
Photographer
Kiboko
Funny how times have changed and attitudes likewise. I retired from the police in 1998 having served in two different forces for over 31 years. One of the reasons I joined in the first place, and what would generally describe my attitude to the law, and the authority vested in me, was that I believed strongly in everyone's right to do what was one's right to do, - unimpeded, - after all, that was what my father and grandfather had fought for in the 1st & 2nd world wars, and I saw it as part of my responsibility and duty to uphold those rights. Ensuring the freedom of the public to engage in actions which were within the framework of the law was no less significant than prosecuting those who infringed it. On a number of occasions I dealt with complaints concerning photographers photographing people who objected to being photographed. In those instances in which photographers were photographing people in public places, the complainant would invariably have been told that the photographer had every right to photograph anyone in such a place. I would of course, have been sent to ascertain what indeed the photographer was in fact doing, so I would not have welcomed abuse or balshy behaviour directed towards me simply because I was doing my job! My written report regarding disposal of the incident was subject to perusal & checking by the chain of command, and it's clear that attitudes were quite different then, nobody would have dreamed of up-holding such a complaint. Little or nothing in law has changed regarding photography in public places, the only thing that has changed is the attitude towards it, and the more frequent suspicion it arouses as to the photographers' motive.

Posted 8 Oct 2014
1884photo
Photographer
1884photo
Take a tripod, it looks more like your surveying especially if you wear a flourescent vest!! I shoot for press and it's a tip i was taught years ago.

Posted 9 Oct 2014
brownnwhite
Photographer
brownnwhite
Just avoid shooting near a school or park to prevent the " man in a mac taking photos of young girls" headline appearing in the local paper

Posted 9 Oct 2014
To reply to this thread you must be a member. Click here to join