THE ROAD Haulage Association says that the Mayor of London’s Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is punishing the very industry responsible for maintaining the economy of the nation’s capital.

Trucks not meeting the current Euro 6 standards will now be fined £100 per day to deliver goods in central London, but for many operators, replacing their Euro 5 trucks with the cleaner engine Euro 6 models is out of the question.

‘Approximately 188,000 HGVs deliver into London each year, many making daily deliveries, but only about 50% meet the latest emission standards. If they are priced off London’s streets then the businesses they service will in turn have no choice but to increase their prices. It’s a lose, lose situation,’ said RHA chief executive, Richard Burnett.

‘We sincerely hope that London hauliers unable to replace their older vehicles will not be footing the bill used to fund the Mayor’s scrappage scheme set up to help charities and smaller businesses to switch to lower emission vehicles.’

The Freight Transport Association, while recognising that the Mayor’s van scrappage scheme gives welcome support to the capital’s smallest businesses, which will be hardest hit by the ULEZ, says the same level of assistance should be available to all responsible for delivering goods, raw materials and services to London’s business community.

It is encouraging that Transport for London is planning to review the uptake of the scrappage scheme in the short term; if funding remains available, FTA believes that businesses of all shapes and sizes should be able to access this support. For example, Leeds City Council is granting businesses up to £16,000 to replace HGVs that do not comply with its Clean Air Zone; FTA would like to see London follow these footsteps.