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BusinessCar Office Blog: 11 July 2007

Date: 11 July 2007

BusinessCar Office, yesterday

I've just about had enought of TfL. What an irritating, hypocritical anti-car bunch.

TfL - Do as they say, not as they do

I've just about had enough of Transport for London. What an irritating, hypocritical anti-car bunch. Fiscal hounding of drivers isn't new, but they're world leaders.

Surely part of the organisation's remit should be to keep traffic moving to the best of its ability, not to create more congestion by avoiding any kind of common sense approach. One of our guys here was fined for driving in a bus lane, which he'd momentarily dipped into to get round a car turning right in front of him. It was picked up on a camera and bang, in comes one 50 quid fine. The appeal failed because all they could see was a car in a bus lane, so that was that. Common sense need not apply.

Which meant my blood boiled recently when I watched one of TfL's nefarious branded towaway clamping lorries driving in an operational bus lane and make an illegal right turn while jumping a red light. Three offences that you or I would likely recieve seperate fines for totalling the best part of a week's wages, but I'll leave you to guess the odds of TfL's own staff being subjected to the same rules as those that dare to drive a car in central London.

Then there's the camera vans that TfL park inside the congesiton charge zone to pick off any cars driving in the zone that the entry cameras may have missed. Every time I pass one, which is getting on for 15 times now, it's got the engine running. I've read reports that Manchester traffic wardens are about to start fining drivers that leave their engines running, so maybe London could follow suit and force TfL's own vehicles to switch off because the organisation introducing the London Low Emission Zone really ought to set some sort of an example.

And speaking of traffic wardens, I was chatting to a friendly AA bloke who came down to fix a car I temporarily broke (long story for another time), and he referred to N1, the area of London our office is based in, as the Money Zone because of the chances of being ticketed the moment you consider stopping. Drivers cough up so much cash in taxes, yet it seems no-one in authority is bothered about the harassment we recieve on a daily basis. Think of another part of your life where a tiny error of judgement like spending a few metres in an empty bus lane, or being caught out by traffic suddely stopping and covering the corner of a box junction could have such a disproportionatly heavy penalty.

Rant over.

Paul Barker



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