London Mayor Boris Johnson is considering plans to charge drivers of diesel cars an extra £10 to drive through Central London on top of the £11.50 congestion charge.
These proposals are part of efforts to lower air pollution levels in Britain’s towns and cities. Many other cities throughout the country are considering following London’s lead in creating low emission zones including Sheffield, Birmingham and Bristol who all suffer from poor air quality. Mr Johnson is also urging the Government to charge diesel car drivers higher rates of Road Tax.
The European Commission launched legal proceedings against Britain in February and the pressure is growing on City Councils to cut diesel fumes and avoid fines from the European Commission for breaching air pollution limits.
The changes in London could come into effect in 2020 where London will be an ‘ultra low emission zone’. The area will have the same boundaries as the Congestion Charge zone where only diesel vehicles who meet the Euro 6 emissions standard will be exempt from the charge. This might well force drivers of older diesel vehicles out of many cities which could result in them having to switch to cleaner vehicles.
Matthew Pencharz, the Mayor’s Senior Advisor for environment and energy said “When it comes to tackling London’s air pollution, and protecting the health and wellbeing of all Londoners, diesel cars are an issue which must be addressed”.
AA President Edmund King said that the vehicles with the most impact on air quality are buses, taxis and trucks and in fact “Very few cars enter Central London so these measures will have more effect on the growing numbers of small businesses and service vehicles on whom London’s economy relies on”.
A spokesman for Accident Advice Helpline, a leading law firm in the UK said “the health and wellbeing of people is of the highest priority and the addition of this tax should limit the number of vehicles in London.The Department for Transport said that in 2011 28,372 road accidents were recorded in London so a decrease in the number of vehicles should help lower this number”.
We’re hoping the number of accidents in London should lower but if you do still find yourself injured in a road accident in London, or anywhere else give Accident Advice Helpline a call on 0800 689 7221. The advisers will be able to let you know if you’re entitled to make a compensation claim.
Source: BBC News