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FTA Concern Over the Brough Forward Ultra-Low Emission Zone in London

FTA Concern Over the Brough Forward Ultra-Low Emission Zone in London

The UK’s largest membership association in the freight and logistics sector has expressed their concern in regards to the announcement made last week by the Mayor of London. The Mayor has said that the Ultra-Low Emission Zone in the capital will be introduced 17 months earlier than previously planned. The FTA has said that this new and reduced time frame could leave operators with vehicles that they are unable to use. These vehicles will have significantly dropped in value or will have no residual value for resale.

The Head of Policy for the FTA in London, Natalie Chapman has said that everyone is behind the change to clean London’s air. However, the Mayor of London hasn’t taken into account the time that businesses will need to comply with these new regulations without racking up significant costs that could threaten business security and impact on overheads. In addition, there is further concern for HGV operators due to a lack of clarity over which vehicles comply to the new direct vision standard which will come into effect in 2020. These unclear regulations are, and will continue to have a knock on effect on fleet replacement planning.

By April 2019 there will only be two and a half years’ production of vans that will be available for operators to purchase, with little or no compliant market of second hand vehicles to purchase. This means that businesses that are already working on narrow margins will be under a lot of pressure to source new compliant vehicles.

It is thought that residents living in this Ultra Low Emission Zone will be given a period of tolerance, and the FTA are asking that the same consideration be given to their companies and to freight operators that keep London businesses and consumers supplied and working. The Ultra-Low Emission Zone, when it is introduced in April 2019 will require that vehicle operators pay a daily charge in addition to the Congestion Charge if the vehicles do not meet specified standards. The Mayor of London’s office has also announced that they will continue to extend the zone to the North and South Circular roads for light vehicles and across London for heavy vehicles such as lorries, coaches and buses.

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