London lorry control scheme, London

Project information

Index: 0154R1
Priority:2: Environment and risk prevention
Sub Theme:Energy and sustainable transport
Location UNITED KINGDOM LONDON London Inner London Start/End date of the practice
Start: 1987-01-01
End: on-going

Topic of the practice

urban freight policies

Good Practice Information

Restrictions have been in place since 1978 on the use of heavy goods vehicles to help minimise noise pollution in residential areas during unsocial hours through restricted use of these roads. The London lorry control scheme (LLCS) takes the form of controls on the movement of any heavy goods vehicles over 18 tonnes maximum gross weight at night and weekends within the red boundary on the site map. It is administered by London Councils and failure to have a permit or breaching the permit conditions are contraventions for which you could receive a penalty charge notice (PCN). If you need to drive any vehicle over 18 tonnes within the restricted area (excluding the bold highlighted roads) within the time restrictions below you need to apply for a (free) permit for the vehicle. The Greater London Authority established the lorry control Scheme. The ALG maintains the scheme, issuing permits to those lorry operators with essential business in London (around 56,000 per year) and provides assistance to lorry operators with information on routing.
The permits are issued by London Councils subject to various conditions. Top 5 breaches: using restricted roads when a journey could/should have been taken entirely by the use of excluded route network, shortcutting, traversing, unnecessary journey, when a vehicle has no destination in London and the M25 should be used. A team of enforcement officers operates through the ALG to ensure compliance and currently prosecutes about 2,000 offences under the ban each year. There is also a complaints 'hotline'. Stakeholders: London Councils (includes ALG TEC), Greater London Authority, London boroughs, PIE enterprise Ltd publishes the homepage and the maps. Critical success factors: Enforcement and evaluation are not seen as priority, so little is known except a low popularity among the users, like any other parking restriction rules leading to Penalty Charge Notes. Tranfer: Excluding heavy good vehicles (HGV) from specific residential sectors seems to be a rule that would be very easy to implement.

Evidence of success

The benefits of LLCS on traffic and emissions have not been separately evaluated, and should be relatively small. The biggest effects are for the local residents at night. The overall influence on traffic is to be seen together with other policies like congestion charging or Low Emission Zone (LEZ).
General traffic rule that impact all freight vehicles over 18 tonnes in London at certain times. About 500 operators get PCNs each year.
In practical terms once a series of Lorries are caught the drivers may decide to change their routes. The flexibility of mobile enforcement means they can be pursued to the new locations, particularly as their alternative routes tend to be limited by the size of their vehicles and their intended destinations.

Contact details to obtain further information on the practice

Jacques Leonardi, Colin Sims

Transport for London /

Annex completed on: 03-09-2011

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