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Moving Traffic Enforcement


From 31 May 2022, local highway authorities in England outside of London have been able to apply to the Secretary of State for new powers to enforce 'moving traffic offences'.

Traffic Management Act 2004: statutory guidance for local authorities outside London on civil enforcement of bus lane and moving traffic contraventions - GOV.UK (

Moving traffic offences Annex A: traffic signs subject to moving traffic enforcement ( include:

  • Driving through a 'No Entry' sign
  • Turning left or right when instructed not to do so
  • Entering yellow box junctions when the exit is not clear
  • Driving where and when motor vehicles are prohibited
  • Driving on routes that are for buses and taxis only
  • Going the wrong way in a one-way street
  • Ignoring a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO)

Currently enforcement of moving traffic offences can only be carried out by the police under criminal law and a penalty notice issued. However, the Department for Transport (DfT) announced in 2020 that they would be fully implementing the remaining elements of the Traffic Management Act 2004 - Part 6 Civil enforcement of traffic contraventions. This allows local highway authorities, in this case Sunderland City Council, to undertake enforcement, as the offences have been decriminalised and can be treated as civil contraventions. Local highway authorities will be able to issue Penalty Charge Notices (PCN), more commonly known as fines, to motorists. Notices will be issued by post.

Sunderland City Council will be applying for the new powers to expand the work we already do to improve road safety and tackle congestion after the 6 week consultation has been completed. The consultation ran from 21 August 2023 to 1 October 2023. The results of this consultation can be found here -   Moving Traffic Enforcement consultation results (PDF) [988KB]

Introducing Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras and issuing PCN's will only be used at locations where there is an absolute need. The aim at each location is to achieve at least one of the following objectives:

  • Improve road safety
  • Encourage active travel choices
  • Tackle network congestion 
  • Increase public transport reliability
  • Improve air quality

The locations of the proposed Traffic Enforcement Measures

Initially, we are planning to use the powers at the four locations listed below:

  • Fawcett Street
  • Durham Road, Mayfair Buildings
  • St Mary's Way
  • Southwick Green

What will happen to the income generated by PCN's?

Unlike funds raised by speed camera fines, which are transferred to central government, any money raised through this enforcement will be kept by local authority, but must be spent on:

  • Recouping costs of enforcement
  • Paying for public transport provision
  • Paying for highway improvement projects
  • Paying for environmental improvements in the authority's area

Should there be any money left over once the operational costs have been met, this will be used for highway improvement projects in line with strict government guidance.

Making money is not an aim of enforcing moving traffic offences. We're applying for these powers to make a difference to the highway network, and not as a source of financial income.

We hope that better enforcement would help improve compliance at these sites to make the necessary safety, congestion, and public transport improvements. As compliance improves, the number of PCN's would hopefully fall.

When would the new powers start?

The start date is dependent on the legislation and the parliamentary timeline. It is estimated that the enforcement powers will come into effect in 2024. When we're able to take over responsibility of enforcement, we would widely publicise any implementation, and warning notices will be issued for first time offences for a period of six months, following the 'go live' date.

How will offences be enforced?

The government have issued guidelines that regulate how local highway authorities must enforce moving traffic offences.  Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras must be Vehicle Certification Agency compliant and will be installed at the sites to be enforced and PCN's will be issued via post to the 'Registered Keeper' of the vehicle (in the same way bus lane cameras currently operate).

How do drivers challenge PCN's?

When a PCN is issued, there will be full details provided on the notice of how a challenge can be made. As with parking PCN's, this must be in writing and within the timescales set out on the PCN. For the first six months of operation warning notices will be sent for first time offences.

Moving Traffic Enforcement Sway document


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