Rotherhithe Tunnel: Drivers fined £5.3 million in seven months under restrictions

Josh Salisbury (22 January, 2020)

Since December fines are no longer limited to one a day because of "repeat offenders" said TfL

22554Restrictions were introduced on the tunnel in February 2019 (Image: TfL)

Drivers breaking restrictions on the Rotherhithe Tunnel have been fined more than £5 million in just seven months, TfL data reveals.

Motorists have faced a £130 fine since February last year for using the tunnel if their vehicle is more than two metres high and wide, or heavier than two tonnes.

Data published under Freedom of Information laws this month reveal the change cost drivers flouting the rules a whopping £5.4m between February and August.

During that period, February 4 to August 16, a massive 216,000 fines were issued to those breaking the size and weight rules according to the TfL data.

“The Rotherhithe Tunnel was built in 1908 and was not designed to cope with modern levels of traffic,” states TfL.

“These restrictions help to ensure that road users can continue to use the tunnel safely while we work on plans for the tunnel’s future.”

During the period the data covers, banned vehicles were only fined once per day, no matter how many trips it made through the tunnel according to TfL.

But since last month, drivers of banned vehicles could be fined for every single journey they make through the tunnel.

This is because “we’ve seen prohibited vehicles continue to make repeat offences,” says TfL.

Drivers of vehicles that do not meet these restrictions can use Tower Bridge or the Blackwall Tunnel.

Fines are £130, but are reduced to £65 if payed within two weeks. More details on the restrictions can be found here.

TNSeal says:

Well, what could go wrong? Brunel, when he built the tunnel at 90 degrees to the road tunnel, found it flooded due to the high currents in the Thames at this point. You travel in a tunnel built for horse and carts. Over its years I have seen the cracks leak and canvas and sealant placed over them. If they close the tunnel for a long period then the other methods of crossing the river will be impassable. Long delays are the future.

steve says:

Had me twice in one day. 2 fines if it was clear i would not of gone through once never mind twice cash cow at its best might as well stop at home just trying make a honest living already paid cc and ulez then a week later get 2x £130 fines. Its not like you can stop and study the confusing signage. Last time i do any jobs in London Daylight Robbery Mr Khan

Shaun says:

Disgusting daylight robbery from Sadiq Kahn. Fined for driving a commercial Discovery through the tunnel but told if it was a standard Discovery that ok.
It’s the same vehicle ,the only difference is that I’m trying to earn a wage and not taking the kids to school in my Chelsea tractor.
Was also told that a Range Rover is ok . Just a note that these weigh nearly 4 tonne.

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