One in 10 drivers ignoring Ulez fines despite Sadiq Khan insisting ‘it’s not about making money’

Sadiq Khan/Ulez

TfL insists 95 per cent of cars are Ulez compliant across London

Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 09/07/2024

- 13:53

More than one million fines have been issued since January

Roughly one in 10 drivers have not paid the harsh Ulez fines despite Sadiq Khan insisting that 95 per cent of vehicles meet the compliance rules.

Since January, more than one million penalties have been given to drivers who breach the Ulez rules in place across the capital.

The expanded region meant that more vehicles would be susceptible to fines than in previous years.

But despite this, out of one million fines issued, according to a Freedom of Information request, only 183,097 PCN fines have been paid by drivers.

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Ulez sign

One in 10 drivers have not paid Ulez fines since the start of the year


Under the current Ulez rules, drivers of non-compliant cars are charged £12.50 daily for entering the zone.

To be Ulez-compliant, petrol cars must meet Euro 4 emissions targets while diesel cars must adhere to Euro 6 regulations.

Petrol cars that meet the standards are generally those first registered as new with the DVLA after 2005, although cars that meet the standards have been available since 2001.

As for diesel cars, they meet the standards if first registered with the DVLA as new after September 2015. Electric cars and many hybrid models are exempt from the fines.

The FOI detailed how Transport for London has raised£17.9million through the fines so far this year.

If drivers fail to pay the daily fee, they could be fined £180 and given 28 days to pay. If someone pays the fine within 14 days, they will only be charged £90.

A spokesperson for TfL said: “The Ulez is not about making money. It will lead to cleaner air while generating ever smaller net revenues, as has been the case with the previous expansion to inner London where people switched to greener vehicles.

“Any net revenue received from Ulez is reinvested into running and improving London’s transport network, such as expanding bus routes in outer London.”

The Ulez zone was launched on April 5, 2019, and covered the same area as the Congestion Charging Zone.

Since the scheme was being rolled out between April and May 2019, TfL issued warning notices rather than penalty charge notices.

In October 2021, the zone was expanded up to, but not including, the North and South circular roads, warnings were also issued during this time.

However, on August 29, 2023, the Ulez was further extended across all London boroughs and after September 2023, drivers were fined in full if their cars are non-compliant.


A Ulez website

The Ulez was suspended during the Covid pandemic


The Ulez was suspended between March 23 and May 17, 2020, during the national coronavirus lockdown when no PCNs were issued and charges did not have to be paid.

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