Clean Air Zones leaving business drivers and road-users ‘in the dark’

Clean Air Zones leaving business drivers and road-users ‘in the dark’

Mercedes-Benz Vans, part of the Daimler group, have carried out research that suggests businesses and drivers which are most likely to be affected by Clean Air Zones remain ‘in the dark’ about the upcoming plans.

This year the Government announced plans as part of it’s Clean Air Strategy, that the first six Clean Air Zones will be in place and operational by the end of 2020. Approved plans have been announced for Birmingham, Leeds, Nottingham, Derby, London and Southampton.

The Government announced proposed plans for a further 10 cities in the UK, including Newcastle, Hull, Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Stoke-on-Trent, Leicester, Coventry, Cardiff and Bristol.

Mercedes-Benz Vans Business Barometer, implies that the pledge is leaving key road users confused and concerned about what they mean and how the different Clean Air Zones will work.

In fact, one in five van drivers, owners and operators have not heard about the proposed Clean Air Zones while 41% say they fear they could have a negative impact on their business.

The Mercedes-Benz Vans Business Barometer data shows that 78% of van drivers, owners and operators want more clarity on what the charging and emissions criteria of these proposed Clean Air Zones will be.

Meanwhile just 6% of all van drivers, owners and operators were aware that Derby is one of the proposed five cities where roll-out will begin pre-2020, and just 7% could name Southampton as another of the first cities to have a Clean Air Zone.

Mercedes-Benz Vans UK’s managing director Steve Bridge said: “It speaks volumes that business owners and van operators don’t see clearly when it comes to Clean Air; the communication about this topic simply hasn’t reached this important section of industry.

“Clean Air Zones undoubtedly have a positive impact on the environment and our health, but equally, business owners need to know the impact these Zones will have on them too – forewarned is forearmed so they can prepare accordingly.

“To not have clear plans in place that are communicated effectively is doing a disservice to the hardworking business community.”