Motorists are being “suffocated” by the emergence of inner-city clean air zones such as London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) because they struggle to understand their different rules, according to a new study.
More than one in five drivers does not know what the Euro emissions standard for their own car is, despite the fact that the majority of the 13 zones in the country defined by this measure of a vehicle’s pollution levels comply with it.
The survey of 3,000 UK drivers, carried out by YouGov, also found that only 56 per cent know what the ULEZ is, while fewer than one in five understand the Zero Emissions Zone (ZEZ) rules, more Strict Oxford.
British drivers are being “suffocated” by a variety of clean air zone rules across Britain – a new study has said drivers are being misled by different requirements to enter 13 emissions zones in the country.
The survey, on behalf of car management app Caura, was carried out the week before London’s ULEZ was expanded on August 29 by Mayor Sadiq Khan.
However, as the emissions-related charging zone boundary increased four times its previous area to cover all 32 London boroughs, only 56 per cent of respondents said they knew what the requirements were for a vehicle to enter to ULEZ for free.
This is despite those who do not meet the required standards facing charges of £12.50 a day for driving in the area.
Since ULEZ was first introduced in 2019, and a number of other clean air zones have subsequently been established in other major towns and cities, European emissions standards commonly dictate whether a motorist must pay to enter or not.
For ULEZ and Birmingham CAZ, for example, the requirement is that petrols meet at least the Euro 4 standard, while diesel vehicles must meet the latest Euro 6 emissions.
However, 81 percent of the 3,000 drivers surveyed said they had no idea which European standard their car meets.
Even though the YouGov survey was carried out in the week before last month’s ULEZ extension, only 56% of respondents said they knew the rules on which cars can enter for free.
Does your car comply with CAZ, LEZ, ULEZ and ZEZ standards?
Knowing your car’s Euro emissions rating is more important than ever, given the increasing number of low emissions zones being introduced.
Most areas require petrol cars to meet at least the Euro 4 standard, while for diesel cars the requirement is Euro 6.
Worth using the online ULEZ checker (or via your car’s V5/V5C logbook at the bottom of page 2 in the section titled ‘Exhaust Emissions’) to see which category your model falls into, although approximately it will be designated based on when it was purchased. registered for the first time, as listed:
Euro 1 – since December 31, 1992
Euro 2 – from January 1, 1997
Euro 3 – from January 1, 2001
Euro 4 – from January 1, 2006 (common minimum standard for gasoline vehicles)
Euro 5 – from January 1, 2011
Euro 6: from September 1, 2015 (common minimum standard for diesel vehicles
Looking beyond the capital, only 19 per cent of drivers surveyed were aware of the requirements for entering Oxford ZEZ by car, which includes charges for all but non-electric vehicles – including hybrids – with variable costs depending on how ecological the car is.
Furthermore, only 29 per cent of respondents knew what the emissions requirements are for driving on a CAZ, of which there are currently seven (Bath, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Portsmouth, Newcastle and Gateshead, and Sheffield), although they did not all. impose taxes on passenger cars.
Scotland’s Low Emission Zone (LEZ) was also recently introduced in Glasgow and will reach Aberdeen, Dundee and Edinburgh in 2024.
Again, it is very different to other areas of Britain in terms of who gets stung.
While it uses the same emissions standard requirement as ULEZ, owners of non-compliant vehicles are fined for entry rather than facing daily charges.
The initial fine for all non-compliant vehicles is set at £60, reduced by 50 per cent if paid within a fortnight.
However, a surcharge will be applied for any subsequent failure to comply with the same LEZ within a 90-day period. This will cause the penalty amount to double with each violation of the rule.
The maximum daily fine for car and van drivers is capped at £480.
Only after 90 days of the last rule violation does the surcharge rate reset to £60.
Caura says the different rules and stipulations around different zones are a big concern going forward, especially after the “chaos that ensured” at the end of August when ULEZ was expanded and with more councils looking to adopt air zone models clean in the future. .
It also comes after Bath introduced ULEZ-style rules with variable pricing for using council-run car parks last week.
Although Bath has a system based on the European emissions standard for its CAZ, the cost of using city center car parks is based on vehicle excise duty bands, which only adds to the confusion.
Newcastle and Gateshead are just one of seven clean air zones that currently exist in Britain, although there are different levels of CAZ, meaning not all passenger vehicles pay
Caura believes some authorities are failing motorists when it comes to providing information on zones and rules related to emissions and that more needs to be done in terms of education and standardization of requirements.
For example, on the day ULEZ expanded to encompass the UK’s largest airport, London Heathrow, it searched the Transport for London website for information about the area, only to be met with server errors and queues for get to the home page. .
However, as the YouGov survey shows, this is because drivers do not have enough knowledge and tools available to stay on top of things.
Dr. Sai Lakshmi, CEO and founder of Caura, who described the survey findings as “shocking,” said: ‘On August 29, the day [ULEZ] When the expansion came into effect, TfL experienced a wave of roadblocks after its website struggled to handle overwhelming traffic, leaving motorists stranded and unable to check their vehicle’s eligibility for the latest set of regulations.
“Incidents like these highlight exactly why drivers in the UK need a streamlined and capable platform, which takes the stress out of maintaining and owning a car, which has already proven difficult due to increasing environmental pressures.”
Clean Air Zone: the four different types and which vehicles are charged
HUNT – Buses, coaches, taxis and private hire vehicles (PHV)
CAZ B – Buses, coaches, taxis, PHV and heavy duty vehicles (HGV)
CAZ C – Buses, coaches, taxis, PHV, HGV and light vehicles (LGV)
CAZD – Buses, coaches, taxis, PHV, HGV, LGV and cars.
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