Reducing pollution - vehicle idling

Reduce Pollution - Switch off your engine for cleaner air in the Highlands

  • Running your engine unnecessarily while your vehicle is stationary pollutes the environment, costs money and is against the law.
  • An idling engine can produce up to twice as many exhaust emissions as an engine in motion
  • Exhaust emissions contain a range of air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, hydrocarbons and particulate matter
  • Traffic fumes can make asthma conditions worse
  •  Children are more vulnerable to air pollution because they breathe 50% more air per pound of body weight than adults
  • If you are going to be parked for more than 30 seconds, turn off your engine - idling your engine uses more fuel than it takes to re-start your engine

Idling is illegal

Vehicle idling is an offence against the Road Traffic (Vehicle Emissions) (Fixed Penalty) (Scotland) Regulations 2003. The law states that it is an offence to idle your engine unnecessarily and you may be issued with a £20 fixed penalty notice.

The legislation covers all vehicles on public roads including buses, taxis and private cars.

The legislation does not apply to:

  •  Vehicles that move slowly due to road works or congestion
  • Vehicles stopped at traffic lights
  • Vehicles under test/ repair
  • Vehicles defrosting a windscreen in very cold weather