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28th Nov 2021

Drivers face £70 fines as councils given more powers to punish ‘minor’ offences

Charlie Herbert

Councils could issue more fines for drivers

Almost 300 councils will now be able to enforce fines for ‘moving traffic’ offences.

Drivers are being warned that there is set to be more widespread enforcement of fines for ‘moving traffic’ offences, with councils being given more power against motorists.

Currently most local councils are only able to send out fines and penalties for parking and driving in bus lanes.

But they could now be able to punish drivers for ‘moving traffic’ offences such as stopping in yellow box junctions and performing bad turns. The police are usually responsible for clamping down on these offences, apart from in London and Cardiff.

The new powers will mean almost 300 councils in England will be able to apply for the right to issue these penalties as well.

They are set to come into force next year, with the Department for Transport outline the new regulations in December, the Mirror reports.

Councils have to apply for the powers which will be granted through Designation Orders.

But motoring groups have warned that councils shouldn’t use the new powers as a cash grab, with research from the RAC finding that drivers in London and Cardiff were fined a collective £58 million in a year for ‘moving traffic’ offences.

RAC spokesman, Simon Williams, said: “We’re fearful that some authorities may be over enthusiastic in using their new powers for revenue-raising reasons.

“Drivers who blatantly ignore signage or highway rules should expect penalties but there are instances which are not always clear-cut.

“Large yellow box junctions can be particularly problematic to get across without stopping.

“So it’s important common sense is applied rather than instantly issuing penalties to drivers.

“The first thing councils should do is review the road layout at these junctions.”

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