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Renault Master Supertrucks with glass carrying rack

Extra time for large vans non-LEZ compliant

Compliance date moved from 2010 to 2012

VAN operators of larger vans have been given a breather.

Due to the tough economic situation, the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has delayed the introduction of Low Emission Zone (LEZ) compliance for larger vans.

Due to be introduced from 04 October 2010, the Mayor has put back the date until 03 January 2012.

From 2012 larger vans – as well as minibuses – must meet a Euro III standard for particulate matter (PM), in order to drive, free of charge, in the Low Emission Zone.

Nick Fairholme, the acting director of congestion charging and traffic enforcement, said that road transport emissions were the largest source of PM pollution – which produces tiny airborne particles – in the Capital with larger vans responsible for 21% of these emissions and 10% of oxides of nitrogen (NOx).

Mr Fairholme said the number of larger vans was also forecast to grow by 30% by 2031.

Larger vans affected by the deferred phase of the LEZ are those between 1.205 tonnes unladen and 3.5 tonnes GVW, as well as specialist vehicles derived from vans.

If larger vans do not meet the specified emission standard they will be required to pay a daily charge of £100 to drive within the LEZ. Non-compliant vehicles that do not pay the charge would be subject to a £500 penalty charge. TfL says it would prefer that drivers meet the emission standards rather than pay the charge. TfL says it is not the aim of the scheme to generate income from operators.

Van fleet operators with vehicles that do not meet the specified emissions standards for the LEZ have a number of options to comply with the scheme. These include:

  • Fitting approved particulate abatement equipment to the vehicle
  • Purchasing a new or compliant second hand vehicle
  • Re-organising a fleet so that only vehicles which meet the required emissions standards drive within the zone
  • Paying a daily charge

Further information can be found on TfL’s LEZ website: ww.tfl.gov.uk/lezlondon.

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Ralph Morton is an award-winning journalist and editor of Business Car Manager. Ralph writes extensively about the car and van leasing industry as well as wider fleet and company car issues. A former editor of What Car?, Ralph is a vastly experienced writer and editor and has been writing about the automotive sector for over 35 years.