TfL nets £34k with controversial U-turn fines at Goodmayes junction

A driver performing a banned U-turn in January at the junction of Eastern Avenue and Barley Lane.

A driver performing a banned U-turn in January at the junction of Eastern Avenue and Barley Lane. - Credit: Archant

Transport chiefs have netted an “obscene” £34,000 in five months after controversially fining drivers for performing U-turns at a Goodmayes junction.

Transport for London (TfL) started “enforcing” a ban on U-turns in January using CCTV at the junction of the A12 and Barley Lane.

For the first four weeks, drivers caught performing the manoeuvre were sent a warning notice saying fines were coming into force.

A freedom of information request revealed that 18 penalties were sent out in January, bringing in £657. But the number rocketed to 243 in February – around 9 a day.

Only 191 were paid in the month, totalling £13,678. In March 158 notices were issued for banned U-turns, 13 in April and none in May.

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More than 200 fines were issued for other driving contraventions at the junction in the period.

The fines are issued at £130 but reduce to £65 if paid within two weeks and can rise if payment is delayed.

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Kerry Cohen, who works at Woodcraft Ltd in Eastern Avenue, said she and other staff members have received around 15 fines between them since January but not had to pay a penny.

She said the notices were overturned when TfL did not contest her appeals to the Parking and Traffic Appeals Service.

Miss Cohen believes the U-turn ban is affecting her business by making access more difficult and driving traffic on to side roads.

She said: “How can we possibly know we can’t U-turn when we’ve been doing it for 30 years and the signs haven’t changed?

“There’s another junction at Whalebone Lane with the same sign and road markings and I’ve never been fined there.

“I’m horrified by the amount of money they’ve made, it’s obscene.”

The ban has infuriated drivers since TfL started issuing fines in January.

Many have made repeated calls for the authority to change the blue and white right turn sign at the junction to the no U-turn one used elsewhere on the A12.

A TfL spokesman said falling numbers of fines issued for the offence shows that drivers are “obeying the rules” and “signage is clear”.

He added: “We are committed to listening to drivers and we will explore erecting a no U-turn sign in addition to the current signage at the junction.”

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