London low emission lifeline

London, UK: Vehicle operators who will miss the deadline for retrofitting their fleets in line with Low Emission Zone engine requirements have been thrown a lifeline by Transport for London.

The government agency will not penalise non-compliant operators provided they can prove they have ordered retrofit systems ahead of the 3 January deadline.

Natalie Chapman, the Freight Transport Association’s head of policy for London, said: “The demand for retrofit systems has inevitably risen as we have approached the New Year and many commercial vehicle operators have been unable to get the correct filters fitted to their trucks and vans in time.

“To its credit, TfL has listened to concerns and given operators who were struggling to meet new compliance requirements a nice early Christmas present by allowing them to avoid steep penalty charge notices if they can prove they have ordered retrofit systems before the 3 January.”

An FTA survey revealed 45% of HGV fleet operators are fully compliant or prepared for the move to Euro IV.  “We learnt then that the ‘can do’ logistics sector was busy replacing its aged lorry fleets (retrofitting being less popular), or redistributing non-compliant trucks to operating centres outside of London.  However, only ten per cent of van fleet operators could say the same,” Chapman says.

FTA has produced an LEZ compliance guide to help members understand and plan for the changes.

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