‘Easy to miss’: Navigation app helps drivers save millions from ‘unwanted’ car tax fines

Birmingham: Head of Clean Air Zone 'optimistic' about success

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A handful of cities have implemented car tax zones this year, with a number of others expected to introduce them in 2022. Bath, Birmingham and Portsmouth have all launched their Clean Air Zones (CAZ) this year, whilst London expanded its Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in October.

While all zones have different rules regarding which vehicles are charged and which aren’t, they all have the same principle of tackling air pollution rates.

Waze, the world’s largest community based sat nav app, now provides in-app permit notifications reminding motorists of any driving restrictions.

When driving near a CAZ, motorists will be alerted that they are nearing a zone where they may need to pay a charge.

Drivers will then have the opportunity to continue their route into the zone or take a detour to avoid the charges.

In the app settings, drivers can select their vehicle type which will help decide which route to take.

For example, if a driver has a non-compliant diesel vehicle, they will be prompted with a message informing them of the charge and offering them a chance to take an alternative route.

Ru Roberts, Waze’s UK Country Manager, spoke of how the mapping technology benefits road users driving in and around a clean air zone.

Speaking with Express.co.uk, he said: “I suppose we kicked off the programme not so much with the CAZ initially but with the ULEZ in London.

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“That was our first experience with the restricted driver zones and it worked really effectively and that has definitely helped millions of drivers avoid unnecessary or unwanted fines.

“From that it was a bit of a snowball effect. We were involved in Birmingham, in Bath, Portsmouth came up more recently.

“It’s so uncertain. Road signs do a job of course, but sometimes you drive into a speed zone, but you didn’t notice. It’s so easy to miss these things.

“What we’re trying to do is to alert drivers that the zone is there before they enter it.

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