Traffic-free days a possibility

BUSY roads in Barking and Dagenham may have to be closed for days if pollution levels are not reduced by 2012 under tough air quality proposals. The Mayor of London Boris Johnson s draft air quality strategy says that certain London roads could face drast

BUSY roads in Barking and Dagenham may have to be closed for days if pollution levels are not reduced by 2012 under tough air quality proposals.

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson's draft air quality strategy says that certain London roads could face drastic measures to deal with dangerous air pollution levels that pose a health risk to the public.

Last year, nitrogen dioxide levels in North Street, Barking, were 43 microgrammes per cubic metre - three points higher than the permitted EU level of 40.

If readings are measured above the maximum recommended concentration level of dangerous particulates, the mayor could use special measures to enforce traffic-free days in some areas. This could mean some roads, which are prone to over-pollution, may be closed and traffic diverted until air quality is back to safe levels.


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A Barking and Dagenham Council spokesman said: "Road closures may be effective to alleviate specific local high pollution episodes but will only work long-term as part of an overall strategy that involves a variety of measures.

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