Creating safer, greener journeys across Portsmouth

We’re investing into Portsmouth’s transport network to help ensure everyone can get to where they need to go safely and reliably.

We asked to hear from you about our plan to improve safety and create a greener, more connected transport system that meets our community’s needs.

The survey was open from 18 August to 29 September 2023, and we’ll share results once the responses have been analysed.

These proposed changes are a part of our vision to transform how we travel within our city and the wider region.

Overview

The UK Government has granted powers to make moving traffic enforcement (under Part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2004) available to local authorities outside London.

Having these enforcement powers enable councils to better manage locations where motorists perform dangerous and/or illegal moves, commonly referred to as moving traffic contraventions.  It would also mean the Police, who currently enforce these restrictions, can focus their policing priorities elsewhere.

We’re applying for these powers to enforce moving vehicle contraventions such as yellow boxes, banned turns and other traffic restrictions.

Moving traffic enforcement will help us:

  • Reduce congestion and idling traffic, contributing to poor air quality
  • Improve road safety
  • Make way for more people to walk, cycle, and wheel throughout the city
  • Keep traffic moving, making journey times more reliable
  • Reduce delays on public transport services

What are examples of moving traffic offences?

The offences where we have applied to the Department for Transport (DfT) for powers to enforce include: 

  • Yellow box – when vehicles stop on the yellow crisscross lines usually painted at junctions and roundabouts. This space is to be kept clear to allow traffic to flow and keep space free for emergency vehicles. Blocking these can cause delays and build-up of traffic and make junctions unsafe for people crossing the road.
  • Banned left or right turns – when a driver ignores signs telling them which direction they should take. Ignoring these can be dangerous and could result in a traffic collision.
  • Driving where and when motor vehicles are prohibited, such as in pedestrianised areas or on timed road closures.
  • Driving on routes that are only for buses, cyclists, and taxis to use.

If we are successful in obtaining the powers, some responsibilities, such as traffic speed enforcement, would remain with the police.

The police could also continue to use cameras and other means to enforce moving traffic restrictions if required, including those enforced by the council’s cameras.

We are already able to enforce parking restrictions, school keep clear zones, and the use of bus lanes.

Where are we proposing the moving traffic enforcement?

Our first step is to apply to the government for the powers to enforce these important highway restrictions and prohibitions. If they are granted, we will be able to use the powers across the city in from 2024.

The moving traffic enforcement will be introduced at five sites across Portsmouth city centre, based on where changes would most improve safety and efficiency of the transport network. These sites include banned left and right turns, and yellow box junctions at the following sites:

  • St George’s Road and Park Road at the entrance to Gunwharf Quays – banned turns and yellow box junction
  • The junction between Park Road and Anglesea Road – banned turn and yellow box junction
  • The junction between Milton Road and Velder Avenue – banned turn and yellow box junction
  • The junction between Anglesea Road and Bishop Crispian Way – banned turn and yellow box junction
  • The entrance to the M275 slip road at Rudmore Roundabout – yellow box junction

You can see a map of these locations below:

How will it work?

Vehicles that don’t follow traffic rules put all road users at risk, especially people who walk and cycle.

As part of our plans, we will use smart cameras to identify vehicles not complying with the road rules across Portsmouth. Currently only the police can monitor and enforce incidents.

The cameras will capture the Vehicle Registration Number, so we can issue the driver with a fine or Penalty Charge Notice (PCN).

There will be a warning period when enforcement first starts so residents and road users understand the new system.

Once the warning period is over, motorists who do not follow the road rules will be fined.

In line with legislation, any income from the PCNs issued to motorists who don’t comply with the rules will be reinvested back into our streets.

It can only be used for projects that improve road safety, public transport, increase active and sustainable travel, or help delivery of the enforcement program.

 

Consultation

Before applying for these powers, we asked to hear from you. We consulted on the proposed changes for a six-week period from 18 August 2023 to 29 September 2023.

Your feedback will help us understand any issues with the locations chosen, inform any changes to the proposals and help to shape our next steps.

During the consultation period, we engaged with emergency services, local councillors, and other key stakeholders such as community groups, and special interest groups such as cycling and accessibility organisations.

Frequently Asked Questions

A moving traffic contravention is when drivers fail to comply with a traffic order and is something that is currently enforced by the police. This is a way of managing the behaviour of moving traffic by issuing Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) for motorists that breach the restrictions that are in place.

Examples of moving traffic contraventions that can be enforced under the new powers include:

    • undertaking banned turns
    • driving through a ‘No Entry’ sign
    • driving in a route permitted for buses and taxis only
    • driving through a school street, pedestrian and cycle zone
    • entering a yellow box junction when the exit is not clear

Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras will be installed at the sites to be enforced and Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) will be issued by post to the registered keeper of the vehicle.

We have a duty to make sure traffic moves freely and safely on our roads and undertaking moving traffic enforcement can help us do this. By implementing moving traffic enforcement, we can:

  • Reduce congestion and idling traffic, contributing to poor air quality
  • Improve road safety
  • Make way for more people to walk, cycle, and wheel throughout the city
  • Keep traffic moving, making journey times more reliable
  • Reduce delays on public transport services

We want to make sure that our plans meet the needs of our community. Your feedback will also help us identify any issues at each location, refine our proposal and shape our next steps. Feedback will also be used to understand any future sites we should consider.

If approved, and our resulting application is successful and we are granted these powers from the DfT, the council will be able to enforce moving traffic violations across Portsmouth.

The following locations have been selected for consultation:

    • St George’s Road and Park Road at the entrance to Gunwharf Quays
    • The junction between Park Road and Anglesea Road
    • The junction between Milton Road and Velder Avenue
    • The junction between Anglesea Road and Bishop Crispian Way
    • The entrance to the M275 slip road at Rudmore Roundabout

These locations have been chosen by Portsmouth City Council after discussion and investigation on locations where reports have been received of motorists making banned movements.

Yes, new road markings and signs will be put in place to ensure people are aware of the changes. To enforce Moving Traffic contraventions, there are regulations on the number of signs that need to be displayed.

If a driver breaks the rules, the following steps will happen.

  • The cameras will capture the Vehicle Registration Number, so we can issue the driver with a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN).
  • If this happens within the first six months of a camera location going live, the driver will:
    • receive a warning letter for the first contravention. This will go directly to the vehicle’s registered keeper.
    • receive a PCN each time they are seen to contravene a restriction.

The enforcement of moving traffic restrictions aims to improve road safety and the flow of traffic. Any income generated by moving traffic fines will only be used for specific measures including highway repairs, public transport, and environmental projects.

This will only cost members of the public money if they are served a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) for not complying with the restrictions.

Warning notices will be issued for the first contravention for a vehicle at each location. This is a mandatory requirement, and we will continue to issue warning notices for the first six months on the sites operating that are covered in our application. If a motorist receives a second warning for a contravention, a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) will then be issued. Any new sites will be subject to the same requirements.

Along with intelligence gathered from anecdotal information, on site surveys were conducted in August over a seven-day period to record the number of illegal vehicle movements. This informed the suitability of locations for cameras and was based on the Department for Transport criteria to select the proposed sites.

These criteria include:

  • all moving traffic restrictions to be enforced must be underpinned by accurate traffic regulation orders where applicable and indicated by lawful traffic signs and road markings
  • officer intelligence regarding contraventions identified through feedback and prioritised considering safety concerns identifying a range of different moving traffic contraventions to pilot sites are enforceable by automated number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras.

You can use the survey to suggest other locations where we could look to enforce moving traffic contraventions.

We are encouraging residents to tell us which other areas in Portsmouth may benefit as we are confident that this enforcement will help to make roads safer for those walking and cycling, reduce congestion and improve journey times as well as air quality.

Any locations suggested will be investigated to see if they are suitable and, should our application to obtain powers to enforce moving traffic contraventions be successful, included at a later date.

Yes, these powers could be used to enforce mandatory cycle lanes. We will look at this as part of future phases. If there are any locations that you feel may benefit from this, please identify this in the suggestion box on the survey.

Speeding is a criminal offence and is enforced by the local police, not by the council. Moving traffic restrictions (such as banned turning movements, yellow box junctions etc) are classed as civil contraventions and these are what we are consulting on.

The council is waiting for the Department for Transport to release new guidance and legislation around tackling pavement parking.