Sadiq Khan faced embarrassment after one of its cameras close to the ULEZ border went rogue and repeatedly snapped cars outside the zone. It has now been temporarily turned off.
More than 900 drivers had to be refunded when they were charged, despite not actually crossing the boundary at a spot in the north-west London Borough of Harrow.
Harrow Council called the situation a “disaster for people”, and asked TfL to urgently look into the camera’s positioning, which it has now done. However, the council has also raised concerns about other cameras along the boundary, the LDRS reports.
The ULEZ charge was expanded in August, now covering almost all of Greater London. Drivers with non-compliant polluting vehicles are charged £12.50 for every day they use it.
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The controversy in Harrow arose due to the ULEZ border splitting Harrow in two at the busy Old Redding junction. The camera had wrongly picked up vehicles just over the border.
The deputy leader of Harrow Council said the scheme had caused “severe difficulties”. She mentioned one resident from neighbouring Tory county Hertfordshire, which is not offering a scrappage scheme to her. This means she will be charged each time she drives to work at Heathrow Airport.
TfL have confirmed the camera in question was wrongly positioned and that all 927 affected vehicle owners have been refunded and assured that all cameras have been checked and are now correctly positioned.
“We apologise for the error,” said a TfL spokesperson. “Unfortunately this camera was incorrectly positioned. It was switched off once we were informed of the error and has been repositioned. We have refunded any charges that were wrongly issued.”
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TfL told Express.co.uk that the recent ULEZ expansion “will reduce PM2.5 emissions in outer London by nearly 16 per cent, benefitting five million outer London residents” through improved air quality.
PM2.5 are very fine particles that people can inhale which are not visible to the human eye. They end up in people’s lungs, bloodstream and organs and are linked to deaths from various illnesses, such as cardiovascular disease, respiratory illnesses and all cancers.
They largely come from combustion engines, as well as from cars generally through brake and tyre dust. The reduction is planned to come because of cleaner vehicles, but also fewer vehicles, as more people choose public transport instead.
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