Fake 50mph sign in south London lands hundreds of drivers with speeding fines

TfL claimed the offending 50mph sign was installed by “an unauthorised third party” in January.

“TfL reviewed the signage at this location and found that an incorrect 50mph sign had been recently placed at this location by an unauthorised third party.

“This has been replaced with the correct 40mph signage and TfL is investigating how the incorrect sign was installed.”

The Metropolitan Police said it was investigating an attempt to “pervert the course of justice” over the 50mph sign’s installation, while claiming its presence made no difference to the speeding fines already issued.

“If a motorist were to have travelled through the section that is signed as 40mph at the maximum permitted speed of 40mph, then sped up to 50mph after seeing the now removed 50mph sign, their average speed of the section covered by cameras would not have resulted in them being issued with a speeding ticket,” a spokesman said.

Twelve local MPs have written to Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, urging him to cancel the fines.

“Your communication of this ‘temporary’ change has been poor, with a combination of email enquiries and freedom of information requests being the main way in which the public have been informed of this change,” said the letter, spearheaded by Louie French, the MP for Bexley.

“TfL have been quick to fine hundreds of drivers but slow to actually improve road safety on the A20,” said French. “The Mayor and TfL must urgently review this situation.”

A TfL spokesman said in a statement: “Safety is our number one priority and we have temporarily introduced a 40mph speed limit on the A20 Sidcup Road due to ongoing surface water flooding which has caused a number of safety concerns and serious risk to road users.

“The reduced speed limit has been introduced in response to that risk. Major work is required to put in place permanent measures to tackle flooding here and we are working to do this as soon as possible. We plan to begin construction work on these measures in May.”

The minimum penalty for speeding is a £100 fine and three penalty points. Drivers with 12 penalty points are banned from the road under a procedure known as “totting up”.


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