Emission testing to improve air quality
Published Thursday, 19 April 2012
Vehicle emission testing is being undertaken throughout South Lanarkshire to help improve the quality of the air we breathe.
Fortunately overall air quality in our area is good but as exhaust emissions are recognised as one of the major causes of poor air quality, the council's environmental health officers are carrying out a serious of roadside tests as part of their regular review of the situation.
South Lanarkshire Council's Waste & Environmental Services are carrying out a series of roadside vehicle emissions tests throughout South Lanarkshire.
Ten test events will be undertaken throughout South Lanarkshire during 2012 and these will concentrate on Rutherglen, Hamilton, East Kilbride and Lanark. These events are planned for the following Saturdays:
- 21/4/12 - Hamilton - Muir Street
- 28/4/12 - Lanark - lay by next to Cartland Bridge Hotel
- 12/5/12 - Rutherglen - Eastfield
- 20/5/12 - Hamilton - Muir Street
- 09/6/12 - Lanark - lay by next to Cartland Bridge Hotel
- 16/6/12 - East Kilbride - Atholl House
- 30/6/12 - Hamilton - Muir Street
- 19/8/12 - East Kilbride - Atholl House
- 08/9/12 - Rutherglen - Eastfield
- 15/9/12 - Hamilton - Muir Street
Trained technicians will carry out an initial quick test which should take no longer than 10 minutes. Should the vehicle fail this first test then a full test may be undertaken. This should take no more than 30 minutes in total.
If your vehicle fails the full formal test then you may be issued with a Fixed Penalty (£60 rising to £90 after 28 days). However the fine will be withdrawn if you can demonstrate within 14 days that the defect in the vehicle has been corrected and that emissions from the vehicle now comply with the law.
Vehicle emission testing is a basic aspect of the MOT test however faults and defects that cause harmful emissions can develop in less than 12 months. It is therefore essential that your vehicle is properly serviced and maintained throughout the year.
Major pollutants from petrol and diesel engines include carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, smoke (particulate matters) and ozone. These pollutants can exacerbate existing medical conditions. Air pollution can also irritate the eyes, nose and throat and reduce resistance to colds and other illnesses. Air pollution can be especially harmful to the very young, the very old. It is therefore in all of our interests to make efforts to improve the air we breathe.
As a motorist there are a number of measures you can take to reduce pollution from your vehicle. These measures include:
- Make sure the vehicle is regularly maintained - check the tuning, emission controls and tyre pressures
- Don't make unnecessary journeys - short trips use a lot of fuel, (especially if the engine is cold) walk, cycle or use public transport more often
- Only use air conditioning or climate control when you need it - these systems use additional fuel.
- Drive slowly - driving slower than 60mph will reduce emissions, save fuel and save you money
- Drive gently - hard acceleration and sudden stops increase fuel consumption
- Switch off the engine - if you are stuck in traffic for more than a minute turn the engine off
The decisions we make about how we look after our vehicles, how we drive our vehicles and the alternative travel choices that we make will have an impact on our air quality. Even these small changes could help reduce pollution.
More advice on air quality can be found at www.scottishairquality.co.uk which provides up to date data regarding air quality in South Lanarkshire as well as throughout Scotland. This can be particularly useful to those suffering respiratory ailments.
Additional advice can also be obtained from South Lanarkshire's Waste and Environmental Services department. You can email the team at email@example.com or call 0303 123 1015.