Bristol CAZ experiencing hiccups ahead of launch

Motorists hundreds of miles north of Bristol have received vehicle non-compliance warnings, despite never having entered the Clean Air Zone (CAZ).

Bristol City Council has experienced a few hiccups ahead of the launch of its CAZ later this month on November 28th.

The council has been sending out warnings to vehicles entering the zone since October 31st, to make drivers aware that while they won’t be charged for that trip, they will soon be fined for driving in the area with a non-compliant vehicle.

However, drivers hundreds of miles away from the city have been receiving the notices, with some asking for compensation for the time spent trying to resolve the issue.

The council has said there may be a problem with the Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras set up which could have misread the number plates.

aerial view of bridge

Anyone who lives outside of Bristol or was not driving in the area over a three-week period in September have been told to ignore the letter.

Cars which meet the Euro 4 (petrol) and Euro 6 (diesel) emissions standards for nitrogen dioxide emissions will not be charged for entering the zone. Currently, its estimated that 71% of cars in Bristol are CAZ compliant.

This figure is expected to increase following the CAZ launch, much like it has in Birmingham. Here, compliant vehicles rose from 79.8% in June 2021 when the CAZ was introduced to 88.8% in December the same year.

Mayor of Bristol Marvin Rees said: ‘We are committed to reducing air pollution in Bristol and continue to offer people support to consider alternative, more sustainable ways of travelling in our city. We want Bristol to be a healthier place for everyone to grow up, live and work, but recognise that this comes with challenges.

‘We’ve been able to secure financial support of £42m from government for people and businesses to use, but now Bristolians need to make sure they’re getting ready.’

For those eligible who need more time to upgrade or change their vehicle, temporary exemptions are available, as well council grants and loans and free active travel support.

Photo by Samuel Oakes


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