Bus camera bosses told: ‘Pay back penalty fines’

23/8/2011'Traffic enforcement cameras at Moor End Road, Hemel Hempstead.
23/8/2011'Traffic enforcement cameras at Moor End Road, Hemel Hempstead.

TRANSPORT minister Mike Penning says the penalties dished out to drivers in Moor End Road should be quashed until signs are made clearer.

The MP for Hemel Hempstead says those already fined should be refunded as it emerges more than 10,000 motorists have been hit since August 8 – the equivalent of more than 12 per cent of the town’s population.

Mr Penning, who has been ‘inundated’ with letters, says the road should be painted red and signs made clearer.

“Ignorance in the eyes of the law has never been a defence but some of the signage is clearly wrong,” he said. “The thing to do surely is suspend any enforcement against people while they sort this out. They’re going to have to see sense and address this.

“Having a bus lane is not an issue as long as people know it’s a bus lane. It’s not for me to dictate if it’s a bus lane there, but it has to be signed right and it has to be morally right.”

The minister has written to Caroline Tapster, chief executive of Herts County Council, asking her to suspend enforcement action and refund any fines already doled out.

More news and pictures in The Gazette every week.