Bath proposal to charge Euro VI HGVs entering CAZ is “unworkable” says RHA

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The Road Haulage Association has condemned the Clean Air Zone change proposed by Bath and North East Somerset council, which would make Euro VI HGVs pay a daily charge of £50 to enter the zone. The RHA says the measure would be unworkable, against small businesses and added that the council should “be realistic".

Bath proposal to charge Euro VI HGVs entering CAZ is “unworkable” says RHA
Featured image: Bath and North East Somerset Council

Bath and North East Somerset Council announced their proposal to expand the Bath Clean Air Zone to Euro VI HGVs weighing more than 12 tonnes at the end of November.

The proposal, if agreed, would see the order altered to introduce a £50 charge for Class N3 Euro VI diesel HGVs which enter the charging scheme area. Currently, non-compliant Class N3 Euro V diesel HGVs and below have to pay £100 daily to enter the zone.

The council says the charge for Euro VI lorries would be lower than the current “in recognition of the need to strike a balance between encouraging further improvements in the HGV fleet and operators sending older, higher polluting HGVs into the city”.

The consultation has gone live on 13th December and will be available until 7th February 2023.

The Road Haulage Association (RHA) is calling the proposal unworkabl “because the HGV vehicle market simply cannot accommodate the idea at this time.”

“Of course, we are keen that low and zero-emission HGVs are introduced as soon as possible but we – the RHA and Bath and North-East Somerset Council – must be realistic,” says RHA MD Richard Smith. „“The take-up of low and zero emission HGVs is slow for two reasons – a lack of vehicle availability and, critically, lack of fuelling infrastructure to power these vehicles.”

The RHA refers the council to the latest data provided by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association which shows that, in 2020, 98.6% of the UK HGV fleet was diesel, with just 0.1% of the fleet being low or zero emission.

“We are alarmed that the message will distort the vehicle market by stimulating demand for the required vehicles despite the lack of available vehicles. That will cause price inflation which is anti-small business,” Smith warns.

He adds that the proposed exemptions for operators either delivering into Bath or based within a certain radius of the city are meaningless if the supply of the required vehicles is unavailable.


Featured image: Bath and North East Somerset Council

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