The Government has recommended that drivers be fined for offences such as stopping in yellow box junctions.
Currently only London and Cardiff have the power to deal with ‘moving traffic violations’, however Transport Secrerary Grant Shapps is considering letting all local councils have the same powers.
But will this allow councils to simply have someone standing at the box junctions with a camera and send out fines in order to fill their struggling coffers or is it a sensible move to encourage drivers to be more road aware and more considerate?
Under the Traffic Management Act 2004, councils must apply for powers to tackle parking, bus lane contraventions and moving traffic violations. Many have taken measures to enforce parking and bus lane contraventions, but not moving traffic violations.
Transport for London has been penalising drivers for stopping in yellow box junctions for 15 years. In the 2017/18 financial year alone, it issued £16 million in fines.
In many cases drivers claim stopping was unavoidable – either because of traffic light sequencing, or because of drivers ahead of them blocking their path.
How to guide: Yellow box junctions
What is the point of a yellow box junction?
A box junction keeps traffic flowing by marking out an area of road space that’s to be kept clear at all times.
When can I drive into a yellow box junction?
You are only meant to enter a box junction if your exit is clear – in other words, if you can drive all the way through it without stopping.
Am I ever allowed to stop in a yellow box junction?
If you are turning right, you can stop in a box junction, if oncoming traffic prevents you from doing so – but only if your exit is clear.
Why do people get wound up about yellow box junctions?
Motorists get annoyed with box junction transgressors because everyone else gets blocked along with the offending driver – it is considered one of the more ‘selfish’ motoring offences.