YP Letters: Drivers in bus lanes are not criminals

From: Janet Porter, Chapel Allerton, Leeds.
Should enforcement of bus lane restrictions be more lenient?Should enforcement of bus lane restrictions be more lenient?
Should enforcement of bus lane restrictions be more lenient?

The widespread fining and criminalisation of drivers who inadvertently use the bus lanes is making my blood boil.

I agree the shared bus and cycle lanes in Leeds should not be used by cars, especially as I am a cyclist and appreciate a clear bus lane. Bus travel needs to be efficient.

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However, the signing and time limitation on bus lanes is so confusing that drivers are bound to make mistakes and are then trapped into having to pay large fines.

It has been widely publicised that bus lane fines make millions, and no reasonable person could believe all those drivers deliberately flout the law.

Everyone would know where they stood if the lanes were not to be used at any time by cars.

They should be clearly marked and there should be a system of warning drivers before they are fined. There should also be a better system of appeal.

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I inadvertently went across a bus lane on Kirkstall Road a few months ago and I paid the fine because I thought it would put me in a better position to appeal.

But I discovered that by paying the £30 you are deemed to admit you are to blame. If you appeal and fail, the fine is at least £60 and there could be expenses. So most people opt to pay, even though they feel cheated. Once they pay they can do nothing.

My daughter has just had a similar experience and I’ve advised her not to pay and to appeal and we are awaiting the result.

I feel the city’s bus lanes, along with others nationwide, are being used as yet another means to make money out of motorists. It is a disgrace.

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My answer: ban all cars from bus lanes at all times and have done with it; give drivers a warning the first time they stray.

Give drivers a chance – they are not criminals, they have just made a mistake owing to being confused by the system.

Drivers could make life difficult for the bus lane robbers by refusing to pay and by appealing against the fine.

If all drivers do this, then authorities will have to act.

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Authorities need to get bus lanes properly organised, stop robbing people and focus attention on drivers who drive through red lights, use mobile phones and drive on to footpaths.

From: Greg Mulholland, Leeds North West MP.

UP to 50,000 people a year die across the UK because of air pollution and the research published shows nearly three-quarters of the public in Leeds is strongly concerned about the poor quality of air.

We need to discourage the use of polluting diesel vehicles and instead encourage the uptake of less polluting alternatives. Ministers must take vital action to reduce pollution in places like Leeds and deliver cleaner air for everyone.

From: Andrew Mercer, Guiseley.

HAVE bus drivers been told to stop using their indicators? I’m fed up of buses pulling out without warning – or a care for any other road user. What can be done about this?

Qualifications of our MPs

From: Terry Maunder, Kirkstall, Leeds.

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I WOULD like to point out, in response to recent correspondence, that barely any current MPs (or, indeed, past ones) have the qualifications to do their jobs.

David Cameron and George Osborne have made a mess of several economic issues while benefiting those with offshore accounts. Jeremy Hunt and Alistair Burt have no qualifications in healthcare. The former defence secretary had no experience in the Armed Forces.

Those involved in the environment have no competence in this area, as shown after the last bout of flooding.

The only thing they do share, many of them, is membership of the posh boys’ club.

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That, dear MPs, is the “unacceptable face of capitalism” – rich people with no qualifications to do so running the country for their own selfish ends without remorse for the pain they cause those they refer to as “ordinary”.

At least Jeremy Corbyn gives the impression of caring as opposed to pretending to.

Return to coal for our power

From: Dr Glyn Powell, Bakersfield Drive, Goole.

THERESA May’s Government delays giving the go ahead for the construction of Hinkley Point C nuclear power station. In using this delay to consider all the pros and cons of this project, the Government must consider three key facts:

The astronomical cost of the project and, also, the cost of future electricity prices to the consumer.

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The national security implications of being beholden financially to China.

Finally, is there a better, cheaper and safer alternative method of power generation than nuclear?

Given the parlous state of the economy, it would be lunacy to spend many billions of pounds on Hinkley Point.

Similarly, the high cost of electricity would not only impoverish people but also render British industry increasingly uncompetitive.

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We have millions of tonnes of coal beneath our feet. This should be used to generate cheap electricity at a fraction of the cost of nuclear power and, with new technology, with few or no environmentally damaging carbon emissions.