Transport for London (TfL) has been found to have issued motoring fines illegally using CCTV evidence. The ruling by the London Tribunals could see thousands of existing fines overturned and motorists eligible for refunds.

The tribunal found that TfL had breached government guidance by using CCTV rather than traffic wardens to enforce road rules. The guidance states that CCTV should only be used to issue fines “where enforcement is difficult or sensitive and enforcement by a civil enforcement officer is not practicable”.

In the test case, eight motorists were fined for parking in bays on red routes in London. TfL used CCTV footage to issue the fines, but the tribunal found that this was not appropriate as the motorists could have had legitimate reasons for stopping, such as loading or unloading.

The ruling is a significant blow to TfL, which issues around 435,000 PCNs of all types per year. If each fine was paid in full at £160, this would total £69m in revenue.

It is not yet clear how many motorists could be eligible for refunds as a result of the ruling. However, it is likely to be a significant number, as TfL has been using CCTV to issue fines for a number of years.

The ruling is also likely to have implications for other local authorities that use CCTV to issue fines. They will need to review their practices to ensure that they are complying with government guidance.

Motorists who have been issued a PCN by TfL using CCTV evidence may be able to appeal the fine. They can do this by contacting the TfL Penalty Charge Notice Appeals Team. They will need to provide evidence to support their appeal, such as a witness statement or photographic evidence.

The ruling is a welcome victory for motorists who have been unfairly fined by TfL. It is important that local authorities comply with government guidance when issuing fines, and this ruling should help to ensure that this happens.


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