The Ranty Highwayman)
SATURDAY, 10 FEBRUARY 2018
After a consultation with Londoners, Transport for London applied to the Secretary of State of Transport, Chris Grayling, to increase the costs of penalty charge notices (PCNs).
This was specifically to increase fines on the Transport for London Road Network (TLRN) and the Congestion Charging Zone (CCZ) from £130 to £160 (or £65 to £80 for early payment). The kind of contraventions were are talking about relate to parking, bus lane use and moving traffic (disobeying banned turns, yellow boxes etc).
The full consultation report is available here. The report makes some interesting reading. For example, after a review in April 2017, it was found;
“that the volume of PCNs raised for TLRN and Congestion Charge
contraventions in has been rising since 2011. It also found that the rate of repeat offending has been growing during the same period. In 2011 almost 60 percent of CC PCNs and 34 percent of TLRN PCNs were issued to repeat offenders. By 2016 this number increased to 64 per cent for the CC and 38 percent for TLRN PCNs. The rise in contraventions on the TLRN and in the CCZ is a factor that impacts on congestion, traffic speed and traffic flows in London.”
That is some serious levels of ignoring the rules by some people! I’d go as far as saying that PCNs will be an operational expense for many people which gets funded by customers or ignored by the rich.
Just 7,390 responses were received from the public businesses in a city of some 8.7 million people. Overall, TfL looked at the comments people made which was summarised as follows;
“7,847 of all comments made by the public and businesses opposed the proposal, 657 comments supporting it and 1,609 comments supported implementing a change but with some vehicles / road user groups included or excluded from the PCN increase”
So there was not much support for an increase in charging from those responding – I’m not sure that comes as much of a surprise!