Ban cars near schools, say health chiefs

Public Health England calls for strict controls on cars around schools and more congestion charge zones around the country

Exhaust emissions

Cars should be banned from around schools, according to a leading government health chief, and congestion charge zone should be considered in more towns and cities in bids to improve air quality. 

Speaking ahead of the publication of a report on the issue by Public Health England, Paul Cosford, the organisation’s medical director, told the Times the UK must create a “pollution-free generation”, adding that  “We know that most of the exposure of children to air pollution is from traffic.”

London ULEZ: everything you need to know

Cosford said that by “restricting driving access to the immediate local environment,” it would be possible to “create an environment where it’s easier for children to walk or cycle to school than be driven.” 

Previous suggested methods for tackling air pollution include the removal of speedbumps, which would reduce emission-generating acceleration and deceleration, and fines for allowing engines to idle around schools. Cosford’s suggestion to ban cars around schools altogether is a new one, however, though he says ““We know that local councils are wanting to do this”, but some are “finding it difficult in some cases to find the right range of measures and to get the public acceptability for some of the things they think they want to do.”

Councils across the country should also consider implementing congestion charge zones, similar to London’s, in order to bring down levels of pollution. “Local authorities have to work out what the right plan for them is, often I think that will be a charging plan” Cosford said, adding that “charging clearly does have an effect.”

Cosford’s comments come in light of research claiming air pollution is linked to 40,000 deaths a year in the UK, an estimate that comes form statistical modelling rather than recorded deaths. Nonetheless, some 44 UK towns and cities have previously been found in breach of World Health Organisation limits for PM 2.5 particles – microscopic pieces of soot generated by exhaust fumes and linked to health conditions.

Would you be in favour of banning cars in the areas around schools? Let us know in the comments...

Recommended

UK road pricing: UK plan to plug the fuel duty gap
Motorway
News

UK road pricing: UK plan to plug the fuel duty gap

The Government’s plan to plug the £30bn gap in lost fuel duty is taking shape with bans on petrol and diesel car and trucks looming
13 Jul 2021
Four million people in the UK have fallen asleep while driving
Tired driver
News

Four million people in the UK have fallen asleep while driving

Research produces worrying revelation that four million UK motorists have nodded off behind the wheel at some point
16 Jun 2021
Thatcham approved devices and crash tests explained
Joe Finnerty in Hyper G sled
Consumer news

Thatcham approved devices and crash tests explained

Thatcham studies crashes, rates alarms and sets insurance groups to help cut drivers’ costs. We find out how
11 May 2021
Company car tax guide 2021/2022: everything you need to know
Executive saloons make popular company cars
Consumer news

Company car tax guide 2021/2022: everything you need to know

Company car tax is bound up in a complex net of emissions, salaries and a car's value; we explain how the system looks for the 2021/22 Financial Year
27 Apr 2021

Most Popular

New Vauxhall Crossland Griffin arrives to boost SUV’s appeal
Vauxhall Crossland Griffin
Vauxhall Crossland

New Vauxhall Crossland Griffin arrives to boost SUV’s appeal

The new Vauxhall Crossland Griffin undercuts the SE on price, but adds more equipment
26 Jul 2021
New SsangYong X200 SUV previewed in teaser sketches
SsangYong X200
SsangYong

New SsangYong X200 SUV previewed in teaser sketches

New X200 SUV concept signifies radical new design direction for SsangYong
27 Jul 2021
New McLaren 765LT Spider redefines open-top performance
McLaren 765LT Spider - front action
McLaren 765LT

New McLaren 765LT Spider redefines open-top performance

The drop-top McLaren 765LT Spider takes just 2.8 seconds to sprint from 0-62mph, while it can reach 124mph from rest in 7.2 seconds
27 Jul 2021