South Lanarkshire hands out £60 fixed penalty notice to five drivers whose vehicles were found not to meet emission standards
A Scottish local authority has issued five fixed penalty notices in 2013 to drivers whose vehicles were found to have exhaust emission defects.
The action forms part of ongoing work by South Lanarkshire council to improve its air quality, after it had recognised that vehicle emissions had been contributing to air pollution in the area.
Over 761 vehicles were tested overall during May, June and July, with the drivers of the five found not to meet vehicle emissions standards ordered to bring their vehicles in to compliance with the law within 14 days or face a £60 fine.
In a statement, the local authority said: “Fortunately overall air quality in the South Lanarkshire area is good and is regularly reviewed by our Environmental Health officers. Where areas of poorer air quality are identified an action plan to improve it is put in place.
“As part of our action plan to improve our air quality, our officers carried out a number of roadside vehicle emissions tests throughout the area during May, June and July of this year.
“Vehicle emission testing is a basic aspect of the MOT test however faults and defects that cause harmful emissions can develop in less than 12 months. It is therefore essential that vehicles are properly serviced and maintained throughout the year.
It added: “Major pollutants from petrol and diesel engines include carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, smoke (particulate matters) and ozone. These pollutants can exacerbate existing medical conditions. Air pollution can also irritate the eyes, nose and throat and reduce resistance to colds and other illnesses.
“The very young and the very old are particularly vulnerable to air pollution. It is therefore in all of our interests to make efforts to improve the air we breathe.â€?
The council began carrying out similar testing of vehicles in April 2012 (see AirQualityNews.com story) as well as undertaking routine patrols to stationary idling vehicles and issuing £20 fines for drivers who allowed their vehicles to idle unnecessarily.
In addition, South Lanarkshire is also advising drivers to carry out routine checks on tyre pressure and emission controls on their vehicles to ensure that they are not subject to a fine, should they be stopped by council officers.
They are also appealing to residents not to take unnecessary short journeys by car and instead to walk, cycle or use public transport, and to reduce the amount of time that air conditioning is used during car journeys.