Sheffield bus lane blunder is driving on

Taxi driver Chaudry Wajid jas been given tickets incorrectly for using the bus lanes. Picture: Andrew Roe
Taxi driver Chaudry Wajid jas been given tickets incorrectly for using the bus lanes. Picture: Andrew Roe
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Exempt drivers are still wrongly receiving bus lane fines from Sheffield Council – despite it saying the problem was solved.

Last week shocking figures showed 4,679 bus lane charges were issued to exempt vehicles by the council in the last year – many of them to the same drivers.

The £60 charges are usually not applied to taxis, bicycles, minibuses or emergency services vehicles and the council holds a list of licenced taxis which are exempt.

But taxi drivers said they hadbeen issued dozens of fines as they went about their daily work and some had even had bailiffs turn up on their doorsteps to demand payment.

Businessman Chaudry Wajid Ali, who runs Car Care Solutions and has several taxis, said he had received between 150 and 180 fines and had a stack of paperwork.

The council said there had been an IT problem, differences in the way fines were were generated and human error but said the last problem had been resolved a month ago and ‘we are as confident as we can be that the system is working well.’

However, The Star has learned several other taxi drivers have received more fines as recently as late last week.

Aliya Ahmed, wife of taxi driver Muzaffer, said they had received another fine on Friday at their home in Millhouses. She said: “It has just been a nightmare and so stressful. I have been ringing the council up to cancel and sending in his papers constantly.

“This has been going on since July 2014. When I called up in January to ask what they were doing to resolve it I was told he had 20 tickets and if he didn’t pay them they would send the bailiffs out.”

Ecclesall Coun Shaffaq Mohammed said he had also heard from several drivers.

He said: “People have been receiving tickets a week after the full council was made aware of this and they still seem to be sending this fines out.

“Patience and excuses are running a bit thin now.”

A Sheffield Council spokesman said: “We have identified some additional vehicles that were not captured on the system and we are working to bring this up to date.

“We ask those who have received an erroneous penalty charge notice to contact us as soon as possible so that we can cancel it and make sure they are added to the system to prevent further fines being generated.

We would like to reassure people that this issue will soon be resolved and sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused.”