Here is the leading case on Missing T-Bars where it was held that if they are missing they are ignored as de-minimis. However compare this case with the T-Bar case re L Gerrard Case
Case Reference: 203022636A
Appellant: Mr Kevin John Minier
Contravention Date: 29 Mar 2003
Contravention Time: 09:36
Contravention Location: Oakley Square
Penalty Amount: £60.00
Contravention: Parked in a loading gap
Decision Date: 18 Dec 2003
Adjudicator: Hugh Cooper
Appeal Decision: Refused
Reasons: The Parking Attendant noted what appear to be all the details of Mr Minier's car and issued this Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) because the car was parked on a single yellow line during the hours of restriction. The car was subsequently removed.
Mr Minier has never disputed that his car was parked as alleged, but appeals on the basis that the yellow line was invalid, and the PCN consequently unenforceable, because the line "did not have the required termination bars" (commonly known as "T-bars").
The Council do not dispute that there are no T-bars at the ends of this stretch of yellow line. However they respond by stating, "It is normal practice to lay T-bars at points where the waiting restrictions, as such, change or terminate at an unrestricted area. It is not usual practice to provide them where the line abuts a parking bay, pedestrian crossing or similar feature with its own markings. The stretch of yellow line in question falls between two properly demarcated parking bays with their own restrictions in operation."
The Council state that they are satisfied that this 'normal practice' conforms to the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002, and that the relevant diagram in those regulations, "...clearly shows that T-bars are required where double or single yellow line restrictions terminate at a point where there are no further restrictions in force. At no point do the regulations state that T-bars are required in the circumstances in question where the restrictions change from one form to another."
Mr Minier says in his appeal, "The question is not what's usual practice, but what is required by the law".
As the Council indicate, the form of signs and road markings are prescribed by the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002 (the Regulations). The Diagrams showing single and double yellow lines are 1017 and 1018 respectively. Both show a T-bar at one end of the yellow line(s). The tables under the Diagrams, at item 4, contain the entry, "Permitted variants: None".
The Regulations therefore permit no variation to the form of the yellow line(s) as shown in the Diagrams, and a T-bar must appear wherever the yellow line stops and starts, for whatever reason.
However there is an established principle of law enshrined in the Latin expression de minimis non curat lex - "The law does not concern itself with trifles".
This yellow line indicated that waiting was restricted on a clearly defined length of this street. The line ends adjacent to the white lines indicating the limits of a parking place. In that context, it cannot possibly be said that Mr Minier or any other motorist would be misled or confused by the absence of T-bars. Whilst that was a defect in the form of the line, it is one which is immaterial and so minor that Mr Minier may not rely on it to avoid liability for a penalty charge.
I am satisfied on the evidence of the Parking Attendant that this contravention occurred and that the PCN was properly issued. Accordingly I refuse this appeal.