Tuesday, March 8, 2011

London Mayor Proposes 500% Increase in Fines for Unnecessarily Idling Motorists…

God Bless Boris Johnson. He’s the closest thing Jeremy Clarkson has to an arch enemy and their playful banter on Top Gear UK shows that Mr. Johnson is one London Mayor who can dish it out just as well as he can take it. Boris’ latest plan is to increase the fines handed out to drivers who leave their cars and trucks, “idling unnecessary”.

The fine would be increased from £20 (US$33) to £120 (US$195) in London itself and £70 (US$114) around the city’s outskirts. It’s all a ploy to reduce the noise and pollution generated by idling cars, with Mr. Johnson’s office deeming the current £20 fine, introduced in 2002, to be, “too low to be a powerful disincentive”.

There are those that are not so keen on the proposed increase in fines, among them a British Automobile Association (AA) spokesperson:

“Persistent offenders should be prime targets and perhaps it would make sense to keep the £20 penalty and allow escalation to a higher level for those who regularly don’t comply. We also need to make sure there are safeguards for those who perhaps have to leave vehicles idling or where a mistake may have been made.”

Transport Secretary Phil Hammond agrees, at least according to his spokesperson:

“For us to consider a case for increasing the penalty, we need to see clear evidence of the level of non compliance. If there proves to be an issue with non compliance, we will be happy to work with the Mayor on considering his proposal.”

Carscoop will remain on this issue, and apprise of whether or not the proposed fine increase for idling vehicles is put into effect.

By Tristan Hankins

Source: The Telegraph

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