French emissions fine - Not what you think (1 Viewer)

Jan 8, 2013
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A friend of ours has has some French friends over on a tour in their old Sprinter camper van.
They had been in Scotland and on their way back home must have been into London.
They received a fine for multi infringements of the ZEZ and ULEZ amounting to £1500.
They where advised not to pay it and its now risen to £3000.
They are both retired school teacher but insist that they had no knowledge of any UK emission zones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.


Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
 
Feb 16, 2013
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Can there really be any sense in this, if we go to France we know all about critair and zones in the cities, so why didn't they know about zones in London,never mind the great big signs everywhere, surely their friends would have mentioned it if they were going to London.
Saying that I don't know that UK can fine them, what happens if they just ignore it?
 

MichaelT

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Nov 12, 2015
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A friend of ours has has some French friends over on a tour in their old Sprinter camper van.
They had been in Scotland and on their way back home must have been into London.
They received a fine for multi infringements of the ZEZ and ULEZ amounting to £1500.
They where advised not to pay it and its now risen to £3000.
They are both retired school teacher but insist that they had no knowledge of any UK emission zones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.


Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
Are you saying your friend lent their van to their French friends?
 
Oct 12, 2009
10,811
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A friend of ours has has some French friends over on a tour in their old Sprinter camper van.
They had been in Scotland and on their way back home must have been into London.
They received a fine for multi infringements of the ZEZ and ULEZ amounting to £1500.
They where advised not to pay it and its now risen to £3000.
They are both retired school teacher but insist that they had no knowledge of any UK emission zones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.


Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
If the French friends received the fines at home the answer to that question must be yes.

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Feb 14, 2021
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19 month year 18000 miles UK, Ireland, France, Spain, Germany, Italy. Campsites and off Grid.
I have raised this in another thread about fines for foreign visitors. I really can't imagine the UK having access to French cars details. DVLA cannot even manage the UK's cars and licensing properly let alone fining drivers from other countries surely?
 
Jan 3, 2008
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A friend of ours has has some French friends over on a tour in their old Sprinter camper van.
They had been in Scotland and on their way back home must have been into London.
They received a fine for multi infringements of the ZEZ and ULEZ amounting to £1500.
They where advised not to pay it and its now risen to £3000.
They are both retired school teacher but insist that they had no knowledge of any UK emission zones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.


Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
I would think that when visiting another country it is up to the visitor to find our about such things which is why we, like many others have researched and complied with the regulations for Crit Air and Umwelt zones as well as regulations in Switzerland and Austria. I would also think that as retired teachers they should have had the intelligence to do so and ignore the 'advice' they were given.

If there is a group of French drivers refusing to pay fines properly incurred when visiting the UK they can expect the fines to increase, just s they would for UK residents and any French solicitors supporting such action are just lining their own pockets.

And yes, the French do have access to DVLA records.

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Aug 18, 2014
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Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
No but the company that you register with Transport for London is EPC plc & they are a multi european company that uses any methods to obtain money They can access european wide registration info .They are also the company that enforces many private parking sites ,especially motorway ones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.
& many more in Holland. One driver has 205,000€ fines for multiple infringements ,I believe?
https://trans.info/en/dutch-haulage-sector-caz-319288

so why didn't they know about zones in London,never mind the great big signs everywhere, surely their friends would have mentioned it if they were going to London.
years back i never knew they existed & that as a foreigner I had to actually register .I only found out by accident . & no, the signs mean nothing even to me as an english speaker. Yes I now know what a bigC on a sign is meant to represent but they are few & far between & easily missed amongst pletoras of other signs ,especially if you don't understand the language.
Saying that I don't know that UK can fine them, what happens if they just ignore it?
EPC Plc is a european wide parking enforcement company.they can use whatever methods are legal in the country they are enforcing it in.
It is the legality of the methods they use & the dubious & illegal things they get up to ding it that do not conform
I have raised this in another thread about fines for foreign visitors. I really can't imagine the UK having access to French cars details. DVLA cannot even manage the UK's cars and licensing properly let alone fining drivers from other countries surely?
As above & as I believe i stated in the other thread.This company has access to most european registration holders.
 
Apr 26, 2015
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Ottershaw
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I presume the sprinter has French registration plates, if it's under 3.5 tonnes until recently it would probably have been exempt from LEZ depending on it's age, however it will have received a fine because it hasn't been registered with TFL as all foreign vans entering the LEZ/ULEZ must do.
 
Aug 18, 2014
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Yeah right, they are obviously blind too and missed the 10ft high signs.
Yes 10' high big C means what to me even as an english speaker? Nothing whatsoever unless you have an inkling to start with & 10 years back as i previously posted I had no idea.
I travel through France, It is the same for me .I speak no French & the signs i don't even bother looking at . why would I ? it is unintelligible, means nothing.

I think the French drivers should arrange to kidnap Khan and hold him for ransom, until the fines are dropped..
You'll have to go to mecca as the **** is doing a pilgrimage
I presume the sprinter has French registration plates, if it's under 3.5 tonnes until recently it would probably have been exempt from LEZ depending on it's age, however it will have received a fine because it hasn't been registered with TFL as all foreign vans entering the LEZ/ULEZ must do.
& how would one know they had to do that?
I only found out by accident . When i then went in to it i can assure you the online details vary from one Tfl page to another & is basically unintelligible to anyone who has english as a first language.On one form motorhomes do not exist? You can easily be led to think it does not apply to you. the telephone staff are helpful enough but if you do not understand basic english & can converse on the phone it is a nightmare.
Then add in when it first started it was for a 3 year registration period which they then changed to indefinite. Trouble is many people ,including me, who were still well within the 3 years got "deregistered" .I only found out by accident when assisting someone else on here.
When contacted the back office people stated flatly "you must reapply "
"yoiur account has been terminated" even though I was in the account, all my vehicles were still showing . TFL is an absolute scum of a business. there aren't words to describe what i think of them & I can assure you that I have used all & every one of them in emails to them.& no i never reregsitered I gave them 24 hours to reinstate what they "claimed" had been wiped. & lo & behold it was reinstated.
 
Aug 22, 2007
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Remember sanef the French company run the Dartford tunnel I would imagine they have access to many databases
 

MichaelT

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Nov 12, 2015
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Yes 10' high big C means what to me even as an english speaker? Nothing whatsoever unless you have an inkling to start with & 10 years back as i previously posted I had no idea.
I travel through France, It is the same for me .I speak no French & the signs i don't even bother looking at . why would I ? it is unintelligible, means nothing.
But when I travel abroad and see an unfamiliar road sign I look it up, I also check for any stickers I may need such as crit air or any motorway vignettes so your ignorance is no reason.

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Abacist

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Oct 15, 2013
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A friend of ours has has some French friends over on a tour in their old Sprinter camper van.
They had been in Scotland and on their way back home must have been into London.
They received a fine for multi infringements of the ZEZ and ULEZ amounting to £1500.
They where advised not to pay it and its now risen to £3000.
They are both retired school teacher but insist that they had no knowledge of any UK emission zones.
It seem there is now a group of French driver all refusing to pay this fine and supported by solicitors.


Can this be true - Do we have access to to French vehicle registration address.
It might have been infringing the Congestion Zone Area which will result in immediate fines if you have not paid in advance. If the vehicle is compliant as far as LEZ and ULEZ are concerned then you do not need to register the system recognises that fact and you won't get any fines.
 
Feb 21, 2022
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I'm guessing that the French people will not now be able to return to the UK as they might get caught by the authorities on re-entry for unpaid fines.
 
Feb 16, 2013
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But when I travel abroad and see an unfamiliar road sign I look it up, I also check for any stickers I may need such as crit air or any motorway vignettes so your ignorance is no reason.
But in this day and age, anyone would almost expect this sort of thing, it's not just London,it's all over the world, surely if you are thinking of entering a large town anywhere you would check.
Just a couple of Google clicks away.
 

JJ

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May 1, 2008
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Reminds me of the stories I heard some time ago about Spanish drivers driving through the Via Verde lanes on the Portuguese motorways with their Spanish registered vehicles thinking they were safe...

Apparently they don't it anymore... :whistle2:

JJ :cool:

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Jul 18, 2009
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Signs are big enough. Can’t see why they could t see them and Google what it meant to them. Just like 30mph speed limit sign. Or did they ignore those too?.

Come on, school teachers ! So must be educated.

First I did when we went to France in mid eighties. Buy a road map and guide book and do some research.
 

pappajohn

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Ignorance might often be bliss in normal life but it is no defence as far as the law is concerned.

Were they really touring the UK with no knowledge of the UK emissions laws?

Surely not.

JJ :cool:
Why not.
I wouldn't have a clue about French, Spanish or Portuguese emission laws.
 

JJ

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May 1, 2008
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Why not.
I wouldn't have a clue about French, Spanish or Portuguese emission laws.

Maybe not... but we are not all the same as you Mr PJ...

Even I know there are places I can't drive in/through because my van is too old...

JJ :cool:

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