Islington Tribune - by ROISIN GADELRAB Published: 20 February 2009
Protestors with (far left) Lib Dem councillors Emily Fieran-Reed and (right) Bridget Fox, Lib Dem prospective parliamentary candidate for Islington South and Finsbury
‘Selfish bus drivers bring fumes misery’
Mayor Boris urged to force engines switch-off
FUMES from parked buses are causing misery for residents at Highbury Corner. Dixon Clark Court neighbours have sent a petition to Transport for London (TfL), asking it to enforce rules that drivers must switch off engines as buses wait on a stand outside the homes.
Resident Tim Crowstaff said: “They won’t switch off their engines. The noise and the fumes are causing a continuous nuisance. It’s disturbing sleep.”
He claimed that pollution was a lot higher then it should be. “Carbon monoxide is an issue,” he added.
Town Hall Lib Dem leader Councillor James Kempton plans to take up their case at Mayor of London Boris Johnson’s next Question Time.
Dixon Clark Court residents say they have suffered since TfL put a bus stand outside their homes. The 24-hour 277 route terminates at Highbury Corner and buses queue up before setting off again.
A sign at the stand instructs drivers to turn off engines while having a break but neighbours say this is ignored.
The Town Hall has warned that bus drivers who flout the rules face fines.
Lib Dem ward councillor Emily Fieran-Reed said: “Residents in Dixon Clark Court are suffering at the hands of a few selfish bus drivers. They know the rules but still choose deliberately to disturb residents. It’s just not on. “Apart from the noise and fumes, there are real issues about air pollution, with these buses standing there all day long revving their engines needlessly.”
Lib Dem deputy council leader Councillor Terry Stacy said: “Sadly, this is an issue at several locations across Islington, including Newington Green. “The council has listened to residents’ concerns and is now taking firm action against bus companies. But we need help from the bus drivers’ boss – the Mayor. I hope he will now take action to end this nightmare for residents.”
Islington has been declared an air quality management area as limits on two key traffic pollutants – nitrogen dioxide and fine particles (PM10) – are not being met.
A TfL spokesman said: “All bus drivers are required to turn off their engines while they are waiting at bus stands. Notices have been posted at the stand on Highbury Corner to remind them of this. “We understand and sympathise with residents’ concerns and have raised these with the bus operator, East London Buses.”