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Drivers who leave engines running to clear screens face fines under ‘idling offence’ rules

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James Tozer
Daily Mail
Friday, November 27, 2009

Motorists who leave their cars running on frosty mornings to warm up the engine and clear the windscreen could face being fined under anti-pollution rules this winter.

Drivers are being told that leaving a car idling for more than a couple of minutes wastes fuel, and they could be served with on-the-spot fines of up to £40.

However motoring groups  have warned the rules should not be used to stop responsible motorists leaving engines ticking over while they remove ice and condensation from windows.

Many councils now enforce the ‘stationary idling offence’, which was quietly introduced by the Government in 2002.


It is particularly aimed at drivers of buses and taxis who sometimes leave engines running for half-an-hour or more while waiting for passengers, pumping out pollution unnecessarily.

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One of the latest authorities considering imposing the rules is Sefton council in Merseyside.

It says running engines while a vehicle is not moving is an ‘inefficient use of fuel’ and results in the release of gases that have a ‘negative effect on both climate change and public health’.

Fines will start at £20, doubling if they aren’t paid within three weeks.

Full story here.

This article was posted: Friday, November 27, 2009 at 9:16 am

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