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gtahhh
Hello!

I got a PCN for the ULEZ on bank holiday Monday after having the presence of mind to check that the congestion charging wasn't in force! I was aware that there are emission rules but have never really thought they applied to my car. I'm OK in low emission zones but not ultra low (I've checked online). I imagine that this one is a 'fair cop' as I was completely oblivious (a) to any need to pay attention to these rules, and (b) any signs or other warnings as I was driving into the zone. Ignorance being no excuse, of course.

However, is there any hope of avoiding the £80 fine?

Thanks
-g



PS: given there is ANPR everywhere, why not simply allow road users to be able to register for any fees and tolls occurred nationwide to be billed after the event, thereby removing the need to fine those who've signed up? Could it be that they make more money this way? I bet there's a real spike in PCNs in the ULEZ on bank holidays.
Incandescent
This is the latest money-making wheeze in London, although I'd call it a scam. On payment of a toll, (£12.50 I believe), you can enter the zone for a day. What I would do is challenge the PCN on the basis that you were totally unaware of it, not being a London resident, and do not remember passing any signs to indicate the zone, so request the PCN be cancelled. Also say that you are willing to pay the zone fee if the PCN is cancelled. If they have any decency at all, (a rare commodity in those enforcement bodies in London - councils and TfL), they will cancel the PCN and invite you to pay the fee. This procedure is followed by DART for motorists making the crossing for the first time who either are not aware they have to pay, or are tardy in paying. Of course once you have gone through the procedure, you are considered "aware" and any further instances they will insist on payment of the PCN.
cp8759
I wonder if there's anything that can actually be argued about the signage.

TFL's website at https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-...ulez-road-signs shows what the signs look like. To me, a sign that says "congestion charging" is a fair indication that some sort of charge needs to be paid. Ultra low emissions zone does not necessarily imply that anyone needs to pay anything, you might reasonably think that if your vehicle meets reasonable emissions standards you have nothing to worry about.

As it is the ULEZ signs look like information signs, IMO the signage should give some indication that non-compliant vehicles need to pay to enter the zone, this would at least prompt road users to look into it a bit more.
PASTMYBEST
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Thu, 6 Jun 2019 - 22:24) *
I wonder if there's anything that can actually be argued about the signage.

TFL's website at https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-...ulez-road-signs shows what the signs look like. To me, a sign that says "congestion charging" is a fair indication that some sort of charge needs to be paid. Ultra low emissions zone does not necessarily imply that anyone needs to pay anything, you might reasonably think that if your vehicle meets reasonable emissions standards you have nothing to worry about.

As it is the ULEZ signs look like information signs, IMO the signage should give some indication that non-compliant vehicles need to pay to enter the zone, this would at least prompt road users to look into it a bit more.



good point
Incandescent
QUOTE (PASTMYBEST @ Fri, 7 Jun 2019 - 09:45) *
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Thu, 6 Jun 2019 - 22:24) *
I wonder if there's anything that can actually be argued about the signage.

TFL's website at https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-...ulez-road-signs shows what the signs look like. To me, a sign that says "congestion charging" is a fair indication that some sort of charge needs to be paid. Ultra low emissions zone does not necessarily imply that anyone needs to pay anything, you might reasonably think that if your vehicle meets reasonable emissions standards you have nothing to worry about.

As it is the ULEZ signs look like information signs, IMO the signage should give some indication that non-compliant vehicles need to pay to enter the zone, this would at least prompt road users to look into it a bit more.



good point

+1
Indeed the advance sign on their webpage where it indicates both ULEZ and CC zones, the word "charging" only appears on the CC sign, not the ULEZ sign. I would argue very strongly that this is misleading, especially as most people driving in from outside London wouldn't have a clue what the sign means and would have no reason whatever to go onto TfLs website. Of course it would only be tested at London Tribunals, as TfL want the money.
Twistededge
I'm on the edge of the ULEZ and, considering my car is a 2006 diesel, think this is nothing but an attack on the working classes -- because, if I could afford a more expensive car then I'd have one.

It's also unfair on anyone with newer classics (1980s and 90s) and anyone with a speciality vehicle like a campervan.

I'm not sure how they will enforce it when it extends to the North and South Circular in 2021 as that would mean a camera on every corner!

I cannot wait to get rid of Sadiq Khan! mad.gif
Incandescent
QUOTE (Twistededge @ Sat, 8 Jun 2019 - 00:43) *
I'm on the edge of the ULEZ and, considering my car is a 2006 diesel, think this is nothing but an attack on the working classes -- because, if I could afford a more expensive car then I'd have one.

It's also unfair on anyone with newer classics (1980s and 90s) and anyone with a speciality vehicle like a campervan.

I'm not sure how they will enforce it when it extends to the North and South Circular in 2021 as that would mean a camera on every corner!

I cannot wait to get rid of Sadiq Khan! mad.gif

so in two years time, if you live inside the North and South Circular, you'll have to pay £12.50 every-time you move your car off the driveway. If this isn't a scam, what is ? They'll have mobile ANPR cameras wandering about to pick you up and whallop you. It really is Orwellian
stamfordman
QUOTE (Twistededge @ Sat, 8 Jun 2019 - 00:43) *
this is nothing but an attack on the working classes


But it is poorer people, a majority of whom don't own cars, who suffer most from road pollution as they live closer to main roads used mainly by people who don't live there.
cp8759
QUOTE (Twistededge @ Sat, 8 Jun 2019 - 00:43) *
I'm on the edge of the ULEZ and, considering my car is a 2006 diesel, think this is nothing but an attack on the working classes -- because, if I could afford a more expensive car then I'd have one.

It's also unfair on anyone with newer classics (1980s and 90s) and anyone with a speciality vehicle like a campervan.

I'm not sure how they will enforce it when it extends to the North and South Circular in 2021 as that would mean a camera on every corner!

I cannot wait to get rid of Sadiq Khan! mad.gif

We must not lose sight of the fact that attacking the merits of the scheme is pointless as far as the OP's case goes.

IMO the focus of any challenge must be centred on the fact that the signs do not adequately convey that there is a charge to be paid. Any discussions about the merits of the scheme should be reserved for the flame pit.

Until we hear back from the OP (who hasn't logged on since he started the thread on 6 June), not much point in adding anything further.
gtahhh
Thank you all for your help and advice. I'm sorry for the radio silence - I was away at a work event.

I do live in London and was vaguely aware of low emissions zones but wasn't aware of the low and ultra-low distinction and didn't think this applied to my car. It was only after the event that I checked online and found out that I'm fine for "low" but can't go into "ultra low".

I think the fact that the ultra low zone operates over the same area as the congestion charge means that one tends not to distinguish between the two charges. I was aware of the congestion charge and checked that wasn't operating on a bank holiday. Thinking that no emissions zones applied to me I didn't think to check.

Although I'm not sure, I think the this zone may have initially targeted the more polluting diesels. I seem to remember looking it up when the emission zone was first mooted for central London and working out that it didn't apply to my car. It was the change to the tighter regulations that passed me by.

I intend to check the signs. The ones shown on Google Street View only show Congestion Charge but of course, the photo could be out of date


Another thought. The PCN says George Street. The picture caption on the PCN says "Forset Street / George Street". I have retraced my steps and don't think I went on either of these streets. I have a clear recollection of the route I tooks as there was a bit of road rage when an Uber stopped in the middle of the road to let the passengers out and took ages and I know exactly where this was. Then I hit a closed road in Manchester Sq. That means I'm pretty sure my loop round to drop someone off at Selfridges didn't go on the roads mentioned in the PCN. I can work this out when I go to look at the signs. I see the 20 mph marking on the road in the photo is pretty distinctive, so I should be able to work out if my hunch is right.
cp8759
If you ask TFL for the video, they will send you a DVD in the post and put the penalty on hold while you wait, seeing the video will clear up any issues as to the location.

What you've put in post 10 is a spot-on example of why, IMO, the signs are inadequate. While it's great that TFL have information campaigns, posters on the tube and all of that stuff, at the end of the day their duty, as the highway authority, is to provide adequate physical signage on the actual road. IMO they have failed in this regard and it follows that the alleged contravention did not occur.

Obviously this is untested at the tribunal but personally I would take it all the way.
gtahhh
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 - 13:36) *
If you ask TFL for the video, they will send you a DVD in the post and put the penalty on hold while you wait, seeing the video will clear up any issues as to the location.


I can see that I can make representations online.What is the correct way to request the DVD ensuring the penalty is put on hold? Hopefully this will preserve my option of the discount.

Thanks
Neil B
QUOTE (gtahhh @ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 - 23:14) *
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 - 13:36) *
If you ask TFL for the video, they will send you a DVD in the post and put the penalty on hold while you wait, seeing the video will clear up any issues as to the location.


I can see that I can make representations online.What is the correct way to request the DVD ensuring the penalty is put on hold? Hopefully this will preserve my option of the discount.

Thanks

Normally by telephone but make sure they give you a 'hold' reference number, take name, note time of call.

We've seen them forget themselves in the past but they seem to have improved on that score over the last year or so.

If you receive a letter saying 'here's the vid', with no vid, get on to them promptly and report it here.
gtahhh
TL;DR: The signs are hidden/missing at the entrance to the ULEZ!

QUOTE (Neil B @ Mon, 10 Jun 2019 - 23:39) *
Normally by telephone but make sure they give you a 'hold' reference number, take name, note time of call.


Apparently there is no video, only stills, which can be seen on the web. There are 5 images. There are three called CONTEXTUAL_IMAGE, CONTEXTUAL_IMAGE_BEFORE and CONTEXTUAL_IMAGE_AFTER, which are essentially the same as the one on the PCN but with the car having moved ~1m between each shot. Then one of the front of the car (as per the PCN) and a close up of this image to show the number plate.

However, I think all of that may be irrelevant as I've found the reason why I was unaware of the ULEZ zone.

Here's the view of the entrance to the ULEZ and congestion charging zone, looking from west to east on Seymour Street at the junction with Edgware road (Gmap of location here; full sized images with zoom-in can be viewed here.):



Notice that there is no CCharge sign on the left and the left hand side ULEZ sign is rotated 45 degrees or more to face the traffic coming from the left on Edgware Road. I assume that this signage isn't legal for the CCharge as there isn't a terminal sign on the left. That may mean it isn't legal for the ULEZ as this zone mirrors the CCharge zone.

But I think the more significant issue is that the signs on the right can actually be totally hidden by the traffic lights just in front of these signs when you are sitting at the traffic light waiting to cross into the zone, making it very easy to miss entirely, particularly given the left hand sign is rotated away from you.



How is a motorist expected to see they are entering the zone‽

To give you an idea of just how rotated the ULEZ sign on the left hand side is, I walked up Edgware road, to the left/north to take a picture of the junction at 90 degrees to way I approached the entrance to the zone. Look at the extent to which the sign is pointing at traffic approaching the junction at a perpendicular direction. The sign is just next to the left-most green traffic light; I was sitting at the lights behind where the black cab can be seen on the very right edge of the shot:



I assume the sign is at an angle so it works for both directions but it seems unreasonable that one sign would be able to act as a clear terminal sign for traffic entering the zone from different directions 90 degrees apart. This seems to be common practice for CCharge signage and very likely to lead to confusion.

Full sized images can be viewed here.

Finally, there is the question of whether a sign that says "ULEZ - Ultra low emission zone - at all times" is sufficient to tell the motorist that charging applies and there is a fee to pay if they drive on.

How do you think I should proceed given this information? I need to make representation by COP on the 18th.

-g
gtahhh
Having had a dig around the road traffic regulations, I have found http://assets.dft.gov.uk/trafficauths/case-4754.pdf which defines the design of the signs and how they should be displayed.

Section 4 (1) of this document says:

Without prejudice to any regulations made under paragraph 22 (1) (e) of Schedule 9 to the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984; the authorised signs A and B shall be placed on or near any road in Greater London in sufficient numbers and in appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic entering the London Ultra Low Emission Zone the nature of the provisions of a Scheme.

It is clear that with one sign angled 45 degrees or more away from the approaching traffic and one sign hidden behind traffic lights that the signs at the entrance to the zone on Seymour Street do not constitute signage "in appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic entering the [ULEZ]".

Signs A and B, as you can see from the regulations in the link above simply say "ULEZ - Ultra low emission zone - at all times". It's hard to see how this text "indicates ... the nature of the provisions of a Scheme" insofar as there's a charge to pay.

This seems like a colossal failure of the design of the signs. Additionally, the design and colour scheme means the signs don't stand out and are reminiscent of less important signs. Iow, the only thing visible in the scene below that tells me that I'm going to get an £80/240 fine is a sideways view of a rather muddy green sign with no reference to 'Charge', 'Fee', 'Payment' or 'Toll' etc.

I guess TFL will argue that the one rotated sign on the left is sufficient!

Here's a close up of that boundary to show how poor the signage is:



-g
cp8759
I think the more basic issue here is that the signs must adequately convey the effect of the underlying order. The signs simply do not convey that anyone is required to pay anything. Imagine if on the Dartford crossing the signs just said "Dartford crossing ahead", that would obviously be inadequate.

The same applies here, the ULEZ signs does not convey that there is any requirement to pay anything, so the signs are inadequate even if they are visible.
gtahhh
That is true but seems a harder, or more ambitious, defence of my PCN than the fact that the signs are either hidden or rotated away.

In one case I'm challenging the entire regulations for the signage for this scheme. In the other I pointing out that signs at one junction are out of view behind some traffic lights. I can or course make the bigger point as part of my representations alongside the obscured signage at the junction in question. My main concern now is to have something solid to say for my representations before midnight on the 18th June.
cp8759
You need to make both points, as you only need one to succeed you might as well throw everything at it. If you type up a draft and put it on here for us to review, we can tidy it up and add any necessary legal bits for you.
stamfordman
I've just driven in and out of the zone - signage is poor in my view, just small ULEZ signs, one advance, and that's it. There's also a lot or roadworks where I entered (City Road/OldStreet) and a lot of various signage there to take in.

Bizarrely, our gas guzzling 2005 Volvo is exempt, or so the ULEZ checker says.
gtahhh
Any thoughts on the best photos to include to illustrate the hidden/rotate signage issue? I would say the second picture from my Fri, 14 Jun 2019 - 01:22 post and the annotated one from my last post are sufficient. Do you agree?
Earl Purple
I rarely take my car into the centre of London but did check just in case. I do more regularly take it inside the North Circular Road. I wonder if the various industrial and shopping estates based on the inner side of the North Circular Road will be exempted.

I do regularly bring my Vespa into the CC zone. There were some protests about the fact that some motorcycles are included in the ULEZ restriction. I have noticed how much easier it is to find a space to park now compared to last year.

Anyway, a lot of this discussion should be in Flame Pit.

With regards the OP:

1. Is it clear he entered a zone that was in force? Maybe, maybe not.
2. What to do having entered it? Not clear. It isn't a "must not enter" it is a situation of "if you enter, you may or may not need to pay a charge". I can say that whilst it may have been reasonably clear that you were entering a zone, it was not that clear whether it applied to you and what the implication would be.

cp8759
QUOTE (Earl Purple @ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 - 10:11) *
2. What to do having entered it? Not clear. It isn't a "must not enter" it is a situation of "if you enter, you may or may not need to pay a charge". I can say that whilst it may have been reasonably clear that you were entering a zone, it was not that clear whether it applied to you and what the implication would be.

It might seem like a nuance but I would say that the sign not only fails to spell out what the implications would be, it also fails to suggest that there might be any implications at all.

I remember from when I first started driving that, as you approach London, there are CC warning signs for 10+ miles outside of London, and there are big warning signs directing you to lay-bys where further information is available. I've never actually stopped at one of these but at the time it occurred to me that they had made a fair effort to bring the CC to the attention of motorists, especially as the signs in said lay-bys presumably tell you about the charge amount, how to pay, the hours and days of operation and so on. It's not clear they've bothered doing anything of the sort with the ULEZ and TFL's information campaign appears to be wholly London-centric, so anyone driving into town from the counties will have no clue.
PASTMYBEST
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 - 10:21) *
QUOTE (Earl Purple @ Mon, 17 Jun 2019 - 10:11) *
2. What to do having entered it? Not clear. It isn't a "must not enter" it is a situation of "if you enter, you may or may not need to pay a charge". I can say that whilst it may have been reasonably clear that you were entering a zone, it was not that clear whether it applied to you and what the implication would be.

It might seem like a nuance but I would say that the sign not only fails to spell out what the implications would be, it also fails to suggest that there might be any implications at all.

I remember from when I first started driving that, as you approach London, there are CC warning signs for 10+ miles outside of London, and there are big warning signs directing you to lay-bys where further information is available. I've never actually stopped at one of these but at the time it occurred to me that they had made a fair effort to bring the CC to the attention of motorists, especially as the signs in said lay-bys presumably tell you about the charge amount, how to pay, the hours and days of operation and so on. It's not clear they've bothered doing anything of the sort with the ULEZ and TFL's information campaign appears to be wholly London-centric, so anyone driving into town from the counties will have no clue.


Even dart charge, which cant be said to be the clearest has signs that say pay by midnight the next day,
gtahhh
Hello all, here's the text of my representations, which must be submitted by midnight on the 18th.

Max. 5000 chars; I have used 3700.

I can use either of these as a basis for my representation. I think that it may technically be the first one as the juction signage isn't compliant but perhaps the second is a safer choice?

  • The penalty charge exceeds the amount payable in the circumstances of the case, e.g. I have been requested to pay a penalty charge amount above that detailed in the regulations
  • Any mitigating circumstances you wish to raise


==========
Dear Sir/Madam

On the date of the alleged contravention I entered the ULEZ on Seymour Street. The signage at the boundary is not compliant with Road Traffic Regulations GT50/139/0171 issued by the Secretary of State covering the placement of signs to mark the boundary of the ULEZ.

Paragraph 4 (1) of this document says:

Without prejudice to any regulations made under paragraph 22 (1) (e) of Schedule 9 to the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984; the authorised signs A and B shall be placed on or near any road in Greater London in sufficient numbers and in appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic entering the London Ultra Low Emission Zone the nature of the provisions of a Scheme.

The sign on the right side of the boundary, along with the Congestion Zone sign, is hidden behind the lamp unit and pole of a traffic light and both signs are almost completely out of view to the oncoming motorist.

The ULEZ sign on the left of this boundary is rotated 45 degrees or more away from the line of sight of the oncoming motorist, which both significantly reduces the surface area that can be seen, making the sign must less noticeable, and appears to suggests the sign intended for motorists coming from a different direction and for a boundary lying in a different orientation.

The hidden and rotated signs at this boundary mean that the requirements of para. 4 (1), namely that signs are in “...appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic…” has not been met.

Exhibit A - a photograph of the boundary that shows clearly the right hand signs are hidden to the motorist driving west to east on Seymour St.

Exhibit B - an annotated close up of the view in exhibit A

Exhibit C - a photograph of the left hand ULEZ sign from the north on Edgware road to show the extent to which this sign is rotated away from motorists approaching on Seymour St. Despite this sign being visible to motorists driving north to south on Edgware Rd. there is no ULEZ boundary straight ahead and so the sign should be ignored.

Additionally, and as importantly, neither signs of design A nor B as specified in GT50/139/0171 indicate to all traffic entering the London Ultra Low Emission Zone “the nature of the provisions of a Scheme”.

In fact nothing of the nature and provision of the scheme is mentioned on the signs. These signs say:

"ULEZ - Ultra low emission zone - at all times"

The text used on the sign does not indicate in any way there is a charge in some cases as there is no reference to 'Charge', 'Fee', or 'Payment' etc. This is in contrast to signs for the Congestion Charging Zone, or the Dartford crossing etc. where the requirement for the motorist to pay is clear.

The muted colour scheme and opaque wording that has been chosen is wholly inadequate.

Given the atypical colour scheme, it is arguable whether it is clear that this sign relates to road traffic and could be misunderstood to relate to some other form of emissions.

Finally, since 5th July 2018, I have been living in Australia, coming back to the UK for periods. If there has been a campaign where the details and meaning of “ULEZ” and “Ultra low emission zone” have been publicised to motorists in the UK, I have missed this.

Both the poor positioning and obscured signage at the particular junction and the inadequate wording used on the signs cause this ULEZ boundary to fall short of the standard set out in the Secretary of State’s directions. Therefore this penalty charge must be cancelled.

Please note that I will be in Australia from 28th June until the end of August and so will not be able to receive communication by post. You will be able to contact me by email: blah@blah.com.

Yours faithfully
First Last
PASTMYBEST
Is the car registered in your name? the TfL can only respond to the address held by DVLA so you giving them an e mail address won't help. You will need someone to open your mail from them scan it and email to you

gtahhh
Are there any provisions for people who are out of the country? I assume not.

Any other comments on my text?
cp8759
I think you need to rely on regulation 18 of the The Local Authorities' Traffic Orders (Procedure) (England and Wales) Regulations 1996 here http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1996/24...ulation/18/made

My emphasis:

18.—(1) Where an order relating to any road has been made, the order making authority shall take such steps as are necessary to secure—

(a) before the order comes into force, the placing on or near the road of such traffic signs in such positions as the order making authority may consider requisite for securing that adequate information as to the effect of the order is made available to persons using the road;


I would focus on the fact that even if the signs comply with the SoS's authorisation, they do not convey adequate information about the effect of the order.
gtahhh
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Tue, 18 Jun 2019 - 15:35) *
regulation 18 of the [i]The Local Authorities' Traffic Orders

Is that applicable to TFL?

How should I weave that into my text?

Can I refer to this in addition to my the regulations that I cite?
cp8759
Yes LATOR is applicable to TFL, and it is the main regulation you should cite. The others are a nice to have but they're not your central point. Your central point must be that the signs do not convey anything about having to pay. Have a go and if need be I'll tidy up your draft for you.
gtahhh
I needed to submit by midnight last night, although I think that was only to stop the process with the £80 discounted fee option. I cited both LATOR and the other order, quoting the relevant text in both cases, then put my text that said that the signs didn't indicate the effect of the order or the nature of the provisions of a scheme under these citations. And that there was no mention of a charge etc.

These points plus the point that the signs are hidden on the right, and rotated of the left, I gave three reasons why the signs at the boundary I entered the zone by were not compliant.

Hopefully this is enough but to concede the signs aren't compliant will be a huge admission of failure.
gtahhh
Hello again

I have now had my Notice of Rejection (NoR). It is copied in below. The punctuation, odd spacing and capitalisation and occasional 'å' characters are all verbatim. It correctly summarises the points I raised, then completely fails to take any of them into account. The NoR makes many references to signs at the boundary but fails to acknowledge that at this particular boundary, the signs are either turned or hidden and out of view. I am not sure if there are any ULEZ signs on the approach I took but I don't think so.

Do you think the adjudicator will consider the actual signage at this junction of follow TfL and simply insist that generally the signs are OK?

I was interested to see how much was made of ULEZ sharing a boundary with the Congestion Charging zone. At this boundary there is no left hand side CC sign and the right hand side sign is hidden. This makes it more likely that a motorist will miss that there's a boundary ahead.

Based on the circumstances of the alleged contravention, the evidence I have of the signs being hidden and inadequately designed, and the NoR text, what are the important points to highlight in my letter to the adjudicator?

-g

Notice of Rejection text - Date of notice: 01 August 2019

Notice of Rejection

Thank you for your recent representation against the above-mentioned Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) Penalty Charge Notice(s) (PCN) for vehicle registration mark AA11AAA.

In your representation you have stated that you have entered the ULEZ on seymour street. You have stated that the boundary is not complaint with the Road Traffic Regulations. You have stated that in paragraph 4 it stated that signs shall be placed in sufficient number to indicate traffic entering the ULEZ. You have stated that the sign along with the Congestion Charge (CC) is hidden behind the lamp and out of view of traffic. You have stated that the ULEZ is rotated and therefore motorists are unable to see this and therefore the road traffic regulation are not met. You have also attached evidence for this and have stated that these signs are not appropriate and confusing. You have stated that the signs say ULEZ ultra Low Emission Zone which is not compliant with the regulations as it does not indicate that a charge needs to be paid for. This is the opposite of CC or dartford charge where it clearly states that a fee needs to be paid for. You have stated that you have been living in australia and may have misunderstood some information and publicity due to being away. Finally, You have requested the PCN to be cancelled.

Your vehicle registration has been clearly captured travelling within the zone during charging hours. We have confirmed that the Evidential Record is accurate and the registration has been correctly interpreted by our camera systems. Our records show that the contravention location is within the boundary of the ULEZ.Motorists are made aware when they are about to enter the ULEZ as every entry road into the ULEZ has regulatory ULEZ signage in place. There are also signs to provide warning on the main approaches to the zone, which are placed to allow motorists time to take alternative routes to avoid entering the ULEZ. The signs are there not just to alert drivers on their first time within the zone, but also to remind anyone who travels regularly through the zone of the need to pay a ULEZ charge.

As the registered keeper of the vehicle it is your duty to make yourself aware of any charges, tolls or other restrictions that may be in existence along your route. We have made full information regarding the ULEZ including its boundary, operating hours and payment options, available through our Contact Centre and online at tfl.gov.uk/ulez, as well as running a public information campaign. As you therefore had an opportunity to make yourself aware the ULEZ charge was payable, we believe the PCN has been correctly issued.

The ULEZ was launched on the 8th April 2019 is operational for 24 hours a day every day of the year, including public holidays, and each charging day runs from midnight to midnight. It covers the central London area. It is a separate scheme to both the Congestion Charge and the Low Emission Zone (LEZ), the latter covering most of Greater London. An extensive advertising and publicity campaign has promoted the ULEZ scheme, its area of

operation, operating hours and emission standards all of which is also detailed on the ULEZ website, tfl.gov.uk/ulez.We enforce the ULEZ through the issue of PCN(s) in order to support the aims and objectives of the ULEZ scheme to improve air quality and reduce pollution. We promote compliance of the scheme and we consider we enforce the scheme in a fair and consistent manner.

The existence of the ULEZ has been well publicised in the media and through a range of advertising. We have made every effort to ensure that drivers of the most polluting vehicles are deterred from driving in the ULEZ area. The public consultation into the ULEZ commenced on 30 November 2017 and closed on 28 February 2018. Since that time and until the launch of the ULEZ on 8th April 2019, we ran an extensive ULEZ public information campaign, which sought to target those drivers who may be affected by the introduction of the scheme. This covered posters, the TfL transport system, petrol stations, on line, radio and newspapers both locally and nationally.As the registered keeper of the vehicle it is your legal duty to make yourself aware of any charges, tolls or other restrictions that may be in existence along your route, and ensure that you were not in contravention of them. We have made full information regarding the ULEZ and paying the charge available through our Contact Centre and website, tfl.gov.uk/ulez.

We have erected traffic signs at the points where vehicles enter the ULEZ. The entry signs are regulatory signs authorised by the Department for Transport (DfT) under sections 64 and 65 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 in DfT Authorisation GT50/139/0171. The DfT authorisation directs us to install entry signs on or near roads entering the ULEZ. Other signing placed at our discretion includes Advance Informatory signs around half a mile from the boundary and addition of the ULEZ symbol to Directional signing near the boundary. The signs placed around the ULEZ boundary support the Scheme Order.

We were involved in lengthy discussions with the DfT and other interested parties very early in the planning and implementation stages of the ULEZ. The design principles of the ULEZ sign followed that of the Low emission Zone. The type, size, layout and information content of the ULEZ signs was agreed with the DfT at the time. The signs for the ULEZ are designed to be consistent with the design principles and regulations attributed to the Congestion Charging signage and are placed alongside the existing Congestion Charging zone signs, to emphasise the difference in operational times between the two schemes. The ULEZ signs are supported by a lower panel to confirm the scheme applies 'At all times'.

Motorists will be aware when they are about to enter the ULEZ and cross its boundary as there are regulatory å Ultra Low Emission Zoneå entry signs at the side of every road that enters the ULEZ. They are placed in accordance with the DfT authorisation on or near the boundary. At least one entry sign has been placed on these roads unless they are private roads. Larger multi-lane roads generally have two signs. The number and location of the signs were considered carefully to ensure that a sign will be visible on all approaches to the entry.

We also gave consideration to the location of each boundary point and road layout and sought to rationalise the number of entry signs and attempt to limit the level of street clutter and visual intrusion. In all instances the signs have been placed to offer the most reasonable location identifiable at that site to offer as much visibility as possible and in some instances they have been co-located on the same poles as the Congestion Charging signs, given they share the same boundary.

There are also signs to provide warning on the main approaches to the zone, which are placed to allow motorists time to take alternative routes to avoid entering the ULEZ. The advance ULEZ signs are non-regulatory and have been provided to inform drivers that they are approaching the ULEZ.

We did not use road markings on the approaches, or at the entry, to the ULEZ. The entry signs, advance signs and directional signing were considered to provide sufficient warning to drivers. Unlike Congestion Charging, the DfT authorisation does not permit regulatory zone exit signs for the ULEZ because the ULEZ is a 24 hour scheme and does not have å controlled hourså in the same way as the Congestion Charging scheme or a controlled parking zone does. In such schemes an exit sign is required to outline when specifically the scheme applies during each day as drivers need to know, for example, if they have used and/or exited the zone outside of those controlled hours.

In addition, we continue to advertise and provide information regarding the ULEZ scheme to encourage awareness and compliance,. However, it remains the responsibility of the motorist to familiarise themselves with the regulatory road traffic signs, including ULEZ signs that they encounter while driving on the public highway.

We acknowledge that not all drivers will be familiar with the requirements of the ULEZ scheme however we considered there is sufficient information available to make drivers aware of how the scheme operates and the requirement to pay the charge. This is through reference to our website at tfl.gov.uk/ulez, our Contact Centre (Tel 0343 222 2222), the regulatory signs in place around the boundary, varying publicity which provides information relating to the scheme, emissions standards and how the charge can be purchased. The ULEZ charge can be purchased up to 64 days prior to the date of travel. Payment can also be made online at tfl.gov.uk/ulez, via our Contact Centre (Tel 0343 222 2222), by Auto Pay for registered customers, through our mobile app or by post. Postal payments must be received a minimum of 10 days before the date of travel. The charge can be paid by midnight of the next working day, but only online or via the Contact Centre.

When considering representations, we fully consider all the circumstances presented including any mitigating factors and whether it would be appropriate to apply discretion around the enforcement of the Penalty Charge Notice (PCN). In this instance we have made the decision not to exercise that discretion. We do not consider that the mitigating factors present give reason to cancel the PCN. This is because no charge has been purchased for the VRM for the date of contravention. It is clear the PCN has been issued correctly.

We have to advise you, therefore, that grounds for representation have not been established and this letter is issued as a formal Notice of Rejection under the Road User Charging (Enforcement and Adjudication) Regulations 2001 (as amended)

You should now make payment for the outstanding Penalty Charge Notices. The amounts owed are listed at the foot of this Notice. Please note those Notices at the discounted amount should be paid within 14 days to qualify for this discounted sum. These Notices will increase if not paid and then the full amount per Notice should be paid within 28 days. Those Penalty Charge Notices at the full amount should be paid within 28 days of service of this Notice.

You may appeal to a Road User Charging Adjudicator at London Tribunals, an independent adjudication service, against this decision on specified grounds within 28 days of the date of service of this letter. The adjudicator will consider your appeal and make an independent decision, which Transport for London will comply with.

If you wish to appeal to a Road User Charging Adjudicator at London Tribunals, please read, complete, sign and send the attached form within 28 days of the date of service of this letter to London Tribunals, PO Box 10598 Nottingham NG6 6DR.

You should be aware that in prescribed circumstances, the Adjudicator may award costs against you if the appeal is considered frivolous or vexatious or that making, pursuing or resisting of the appeal was wholly unreasonable. Equally costs may be awarded against Transport for London if the adjudicator considers that the disputed decision was wholly unreasonable.

If you do not follow any of the prescribed actions within 28 days of the date of service of this letter, a Charge Certificate may be issued. This increases the charge by 50% of the original amount. If the increased Penalty Charge Notice is not then paid, then Transport for London will apply to the County Court to recover the charges which will incur a further charge of £8 per Penalty Charge Notice.

PCN Number: XXXXXXXX Outstanding Balance: £80.00

HOW TO PAY
a). Credit/Debit card payments may be made ONLINE at: tfl.gov.uk/ulez
b). Credit/Debit card payments may be made BY TELEPHONE on 0343 222 3333
c). Payment can be made BY POST to: Ultra Low Emission Zone, PO Box 553, Darlington, DL1 9TZ

PLEASE DO NOT SEND CASH IN THE POST. All cheques/postal orders must be made payable to Transport for London and crossed "a/c payee". Please ensure your vehicle registration and Penalty Charge Number are written clearly on the back. Post-dated cheques will not be accepted.

Please note that receipts will not normally be issued for payments unless requested. If you have any questions please visit our website at tfl.gov.uk/ulez or contact us on 0343 222 3333.

Yours sincerely,
D. Milton
Contract and Operations Manager
Transport for London
PASTMYBEST
Post the document not a transcript, and also a copy of exactly what you sent by way of representation
gtahhh
Can anyone recommend a good service to post images. It seems Photobucket have started to blur my images.
PASTMYBEST
QUOTE (gtahhh @ Sun, 18 Aug 2019 - 09:35) *
Can anyone recommend a good service to post images. It seems Photobucket have started to blur my images.



I use onedrive but imgur is often recommended
gtahhh
Hello all

Here is the text of my representation followed by a redacted scan of all pages of the NtO.

Representation text

Dear Sir/Madam

On the date of the alleged contravention I entered the ULEZ on Seymour Street.

The signage at the boundary is not compliant with Road Traffic Regulations GT50/139/0171 issued by the Secretary of State covering the placement of signs to mark the boundary of the ULEZ.

Paragraph 4 (1) of this document says:

“Without prejudice to any regulations made under paragraph 22 (1) (e) of Schedule 9 to the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984; the authorised signs A and B shall be placed on or near any road in Greater London in sufficient numbers and in appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic entering the London Ultra Low Emission Zone the nature of the provisions of a Scheme.”

The sign on the right side of the boundary, along with the Congestion Zone sign, is hidden behind the lamp unit and pole of a traffic light and both signs are almost completely out of view to the oncoming motorist. The position of this sign is not appropriate.

The ULEZ sign on the left of this boundary is rotated 45 degrees or more away from the line of sight of the oncoming motorist, which both significantly reduces the surface area that can be seen, making the sign must less noticeable, and appears to suggests the sign intended for motorists coming from a different direction and for a boundary lying in a different orientation.

The hidden and rotated signs at this boundary mean that the requirements of para. 4 (1), namely that signs are in “...appropriate positions to indicate to all traffic…” has not been met.

Exhibit A - a photograph of the boundary from the point of view of a motorist entering the zone that shows clearly the right hand signs are hidden to the motorist driving west to east on Seymour St.

Exhibit B - an annotated close up of the view in exhibit A

Exhibit C - a photograph of the left hand ULEZ sign from the north on Edgware road to show the extent to which this sign is rotated away from motorists approaching on Seymour St. Despite this sign (marked with a red box) being clearly visible to motorists driving north to south on Edgware Rd. there is no ULEZ boundary straight ahead and the sign should be ignored by motorists travelling in this direction on Edgware Rd. The positioning of this sign is highly confusing and is not appropriate.

Neither signs of design A nor B as specified in GT50/139/0171 indicate to all traffic entering the London Ultra Low Emission Zone “the nature of the provisions of a Scheme”.

In fact nothing of the nature and provision of the scheme is mentioned on the signs. These signs say:

"ULEZ - Ultra low emission zone - at all times"

Additionally, the signage is not compliant with regulation 18 of the The Local Authorities' Traffic Orders (Procedure) (England and Wales) Regulations 1996, which states:

“18.—(1) Where an order relating to any road has been made, the order making authority shall take such steps as are necessary to secure—

(a) before the order comes into force, the placing on or near the road of such traffic signs in such positions as the order making authority may consider requisite for securing that adequate information as to the effect of the order is made available to persons using the road;”

The text used on the sign does not convey adequate information about the effect of the order to persons using the road.

The text used on the sign does not indicate there is a charge in some cases as there is no reference to 'Charge', 'Fee', or 'Payment' or other appropriate wording. This is in contrast to signs for the Congestion Charging Zone, or the Dartford crossing etc. where the requirement for the motorist to pay is clear.

The muted colour scheme and opaque wording that have been chosen are wholly inadequate.

Given the atypical colour scheme, it is arguable whether it is clear that this sign relates to road traffic and could be misunderstood to relate to some other form of emissions.

Finally, since 5th July 2018, I have been living in Australia, coming back to the UK for periods. If there has been a campaign where the details of meaning or effect of “ULEZ” and “Ultra low emission zone” have been publicised to motorists in the UK, I have missed this.

Both the poor positioning and obscured signage at the particular junction and the inadequate wording used on the signs cause this ULEZ boundary to fall short of the standard set out in the Secretary of State’s order GT50/139/0171 and The Local Authorities' Traffic Orders (Procedure) (England and Wales) Regulations 1996. Therefore I request that this penalty charge is cancelled.

Please note that I will be in Australia from 28th June until the end of August and so will not be able to receive communication by post. You will be able to contact me by email: blah@email.com.

Yours faithfully
XXXXXXX

Redacted scan of all pages of the NtO









gtahhh
Hello, does anyone have comments on my representation text? Should I amend this for the adjudicator? (I'll fix the typos I've spotted.)

The deadline for submission of this is 28 days from the service of the notice, which was 1st Aug. Two days after that is Sat 3rd Aug, so I think the date of service was Mon 5th Aug. That means I must get my letter to the Adjudicator by Monday 2nd Sept.

Before I send my appeal text, now that I'm back in the country, I plan to check if there are any ULEZ signs on the approach to the boundary in question.

Any wise words before I complete and post the form?

Thanks
-g
cp8759
I don't think you can add much to what you've said, but personally I would recommend you attend the tribunal in person so you can explain to the adjudicator that the signs did not alert you to the need to pay anything.
gtahhh
Thank you.

I will definitely go as I had a similar situation some years where I thought it was an open and shut case with a missing sign and approach markings for the CCharge where the decision went against me. I think had I have been there it might have been different.
gtahhh
I attended an adjudicator hearing last week and have just had the ruling. The adjudicator appeared very sympathetic and seemed to agree that the hidden and rotated signage was poor. However, the adjudicator found in favour of the TfL. I enclose the adjudicator's decision letter below.

Some thoughts on the decision:
  • The decision failed to mention (in para 7 and elsewhere) the fact that the right hand CCharge and ULEZ signs were hidden behind a traffic light unit and post; this is the most obvious defect with the boundary signage so clearly it should have been considered.
  • Para 6: why has he mentioned that 'most left turns from Edgware road heading north to south go into the ULEZ and Congestion Zone? I wasn't driving in this direction and so this seems irrelevant. It feels like he's added this to support his points in para 12.
  • Para 11 seems like a circular argument. As the SoS has authorised the signs, they must be OK. He also extends this point to say simply by authorising the signage design, the signs must there be placed in appropriate positions in this case!
  • Para 12: This is where the hidden sign should be considered. I don't really no where to start here! It describes a behaviour that no one would ever do, ie, checking every journey for any permanent or temporary restrictions before heading out. He also makes the even dafter point that I might see some ULEZ signs subsequently and somehow connect these back to a junction I'd passed days before where the signs were hidden and then think that that junction might be subject to ULEZ restrictions. I did not see "the immediate signs" because they were rotated more than 45 degs away from me on the left and the right sign was hidden. The corollary of his argument is that signs aren't really needed at all as motorists should check restrictions before setting out (and then perhaps again after the journey!).
  • Also in para 12 he mentions the advance signs identified by TfL that I should have taken notice of. There are no advance signs! On my way to the hearing I walked the ~mile to the junction in question to check for any ULEZ advance signs along the route I drove. There are none.

By way of a sanity check, I stopped three passers by at the junction and asked them to consider the left hand ULEZ sign and tell me which lane of traffic it was intended for, those driving N to S on Edgware road or those driving W to E on Seymour St. (the direction I was driving) The first person said neither lane! When pressed and I said he had to pick one, he said N to S on Edgware Road. The other two were unequivocal and said N to S on Edgware Road. 3 out of 3 thought the sign was for the other lane which doesn't enter the ULEZ!

Regardless of the points about sign design, and just considering that the left sign is rotated and the right side sign is hidden, you have a situation where I'm paying a fine for a boundary that's effectively not marked. How can that be reasonable?

Am I able to appeal the decision?

-g











Incandescent
You can request a review. Reason - "in the interests of justice". It does seem clear that London Tribunals have been "got at" in some way, when an adjudicator completely ignores the main element of the appeal.
cp8759
Well the decision is pants, as the adjudicator has not identified that LATOR does not apply at all.
hcandersen
The adj found as a fact that because DfT gave authorisation then they must have been satisfied that the sign complied with LATOR.

And adjs will continue to do so until this link can be disproved which won't happen until an owner bothers to enquire of DfT what the hell TfL said in their application that the sign was supposed to convey. This adj only assumed that the sign complied because DfT authorised it, he did not arrive at this conclusion independently.
cp8759
hcandersen why does it have to be an owner? You could make a FOI request yourself.
Incandescent
QUOTE (hcandersen @ Wed, 9 Oct 2019 - 22:21) *
The adj found as a fact that because DfT gave authorisation then they must have been satisfied that the sign complied with LATOR.

And adjs will continue to do so until this link can be disproved which won't happen until an owner bothers to enquire of DfT what the hell TfL said in their application that the sign was supposed to convey. This adj only assumed that the sign complied because DfT authorised it, he did not arrive at this conclusion independently.

Personally, I think the whole ULEZ signage issue stinks ! How many people outside the South East have any idea what ULEZ means until they get a PCN in the post ? The signs are so useless, it beggars belief. But of course it will carry on until we get politicians who don't just "mind the shop" and sign-off everything put in front of them. I should say also that I have no disagreement on keeping the old smokers out of Central London, but do wonder if this covers buses and taxis. Historically, these have been the worst offenders, such that Oxford Street, which is buses & taxis only, used to be the most polluted street ! Is that still the case ?
gtahhh
The LEVC electric taxis are becoming very common but the remaining diesel cabs are often quite smokey.

I will request a review, reason: "in the interests of justice" shortly. I assume I will need to state the issues with the adj's decision? If so, would you mind nominating the key points so I can draft something. I will of course point out that the main point, that the sign was behind a traffic light was ignored.
gtahhh
I can see the template letter to appeal the decision here:
https://www.londontribunals.gov.uk/ruc/your...n-what-can-i-do

Can you please help me to fill in the blanks appropriately? The sections I would appreciate advice on are:

My reasons for applying for a review are as follows:

[insert a full explanation why you are seeking a review].


Here I assume that I say that the primary issue of the sign being covered was not considered in the adjudicators decision?

And

I attach the following additional evidence:

[give details of any new evidence or documents you are attaching].


I assume I would not need to add any new evidence but simply refer to exhibit A.

The decision letter is dated 4th Oct, so I assume I need to get my letter to request an appeal back to them by the 18th Oct.

Thanks
-g

gtahhh
QUOTE (cp8759 @ Wed, 9 Oct 2019 - 13:14) *
Well the decision is pants, as the adjudicator has not identified that LATOR does not apply at all.



Does this point constitute an "explanation why you are seeking a review"?
PASTMYBEST
My opinion for what its worth is that a review request would not succeed. The adjudicator might well be wrong. But they have not made a fundamental error in law and they are entitled to find as they did on the facts. Unless you would be happy to try a judicial review at a risk of high cost then let it go
gtahhh
I am happy to pay up if it's effectively game over. However, as the signage at the zone boundary is hidden on one side and rotate over 45 degs aware from oncoming traffic on the other, it seems ludicrous that a motorist can be fined in this case.

A corollary of this situation and the adjudicators decision (particularly his points about the motorist needed to check their route before setting off, and perhaps after the journey too, not relying on road signs) seems to be that virtually no degree of defectiveness of the signs is grounds for appeal.

How can I be made to pay £130 when the sign is out of view behind a traffic light?
Incandescent
Its a £180 !!

When I look at what is going on, it does seem that the adjudicators have been "got at" in some way. I would request a review because what they are now saying is "b*gger the signs, look where you are about to go on the internet". The decision is ludicrous
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