'Unjust' fines cost motorists £200k an hour | UK | News

‘Unjust’ fines cost motorists £200k an hour | UK | News

UK News

The figures in a survey of local authorities also showed about a quarter of the total – £376million – was in parking fines. The roads where motorists were most likely to get hit for parking offences, straying into bus lanes or breaching other traffic rules was also revealed – with one junction raking in nearly £11million last year. This is despite the coalition Government in 2010 warning local authorities to stop treating motorists as “cash cows”. 

London’s motorists were the hardest hit by penalty tickets last year with Bank junction in the City being responsible for £200,000 a week in fines from drivers. 

The junction was closed in 2017 to all traffic during the day, except cycles and buses, after a string of accidents, which included 26-year-old cyclist Ying Tao who was fatally injured. 

All vehicles that go across the junction now are caught on CCTV cameras and the drivers are issued with a £130 fine, which is reduced to £65 if paid within 14 days. 

In the London Borough of Kingston, Surbiton Crescent – another road which has a section where normal vehicles are banned – saw 36,864 tickets issued amassing £2.1million in income for the council. 

The restriction was brought in by the council as part of a scheme to encourage cycling but residents have complained that the signage warning drivers is inadequate. 

In Newham, east London, the majority of the £1.5million fines the council issued were from vehicles stopping illegally in a yellow box junction on Barking Road. 

The survey of councils in England, obtained in a freedom of information request, also found drivers who strayed into bus lanes in Brighton’s Western Road got most of the 7,628 tickets issued, which netted the council £206,000. 

In high street, Slough, drivers received £123,000 in fines while Shakespeare Street, in Newcastle upon Tyne and Prescot Street, in Liverpool, all saw hundreds of motorists hit with tickets.

Hugh Bladon, founder member of the Alliance of British Drivers, said: “Often these restrictions are not particularly well signposted, and it can be very easy to miss. 

“The people who end up getting caught a lot of the time are not the locals, who are aware of the schemes, but visitors concentrating on being safe on the roads. 

“It is grossly unjust that in the majority of cases people are being fined for what is a simple mistake. All these things are sent to extract money from motorists.” 

A City of London Corporation spokesman said: “Our number one priority for the scheme at Bank junction is to improve safety. The objective of the penalty charge notices is to act as a deterrent. Any funds from the scheme will go towards highway or road maintenance improvements.” 

A Kingston Council spokesman said: “Surbiton Crescent is a key part of council’s Go Cycle programme to create better and safer cycling routes and promote sustainable travel. There are clear signs in place notifying road users of the closure.” 


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