Council say man must pay £195 for going in bus lane to let police past

Shocked driver fined £195 for pulling into bus lane to let police van past – and council insists he has to pay

  • The motorist was shocked after the CCTV showed he had no other choice  
  • He was driving along Forest Road in Wathamstow, East London in September

A driver was fined neary £200 by the council for moving into a bus lane to let a police van pass through traffic. 

Stephen James, 37, was charged £195 for driving into the lane along Forest Road in Wathamstow, East London on September, 13, 2022.

Stephen moved into the lane because a police van was weaving in and out of traffic trying to past him and so needed more space. 

CCTV stills show the van unable to get past while an oncoming motorist slows down.

CCTV stills shows Stephen James pulling into the bus lane after to let the van pass him

Stephen was shocked after a letter from Waltham Forest Council appeared in the post enclosing a fine. This letter was the second as he had missed the first. 

After hearing of a similar incident ending in the fine being revoked, Stephen appealed but was shocked when it failed. 

Stephen told the Metro: ‘When I got the second one I looked at the evidence and thought its rubbish that I’ve not seen the first one but should be OK to appeal this one looking at the evidence.’

He said: ‘You see [the police van] coming up and you know you need to do something to help in that situation.

‘They weren’t going to be able to speed past so some action was needed.’

‘I done it trying to the right thing, and I’ve been penalised for that.’

A council spokesperson said: ‘The rules in London are very clear about entering bus lanes, and it is the responsibility of drivers to know and follow them. 

‘The driver can be seen moving into the bus lane to let the emergency vehicle pass, before proceeding to drive the length of the bus lane despite having the opportunity to re-enter the road.

‘Had the driver re-entered the road, they would not have received a fine.’ 

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