Councils getting 'phenomenal sums' from moving traffic fines


Councils in London and Cardiff made £58.2m from moving traffic offences in 2018/19, according to the RAC.

The motoring group, which obtained the figure through Freedom of Information requests, said this was £11.5m (25%) more than in 2016/17.

The number of fines for yellow box offences rose 34%

At present only London authorities and Cardiff Council have powers to enforce offences such as stopping on a yellow box junction, making an illegal turn or driving down a ‘no entry’ road, although other authorities can enforce bus lane contraventions.

However, The Department for Transport confirmed last month that it plans to extend the wider enforcement powers to all highway authorities in England and Wales.

RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: ‘It’s plain for all to see that London boroughs, TfL and Cardiff are generating phenomenal sums of money from the enforcement of moving traffic offences.

‘The Department for Transport has decided to extend enforcement powers to other local authorities; however we believe guidance should be issued setting out where enforcement should be targeted and the types of signs that must be used to make drivers aware that enforcement cameras are operating, and for what type of moving traffic offence.

‘It should also make clear the circumstances in which a PCN can be appealed and where mitigating circumstances may apply such as stopping in a yellow box to allow an emergency services vehicle to go by.’

Mr Lyes said the RAC welcomes proposals that first offenders are sent a warning letter before being fined. He said: ‘This is particularly important where changes are made to urban road layouts.

'What we do not want is this being seen by cash-strapped local authorities as a way to generate revenue.'

The RAC pointed out that the percentage increase in the number of PCNs issued was greater than the revenue increase. In 2016/17 councils issued 752,871 PCNs, rising to 1,007,405 in 2018/19 – a 34% rise.

It said yellow box junctions are by far the most lucrative, bringing in revenue of £31.4m in 2018/19 compared to £22.3m for ‘no turn’ offences and £4.4m for ‘no entry’ contraventions.


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