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Connect Plus Services and Essex Police joined forces as part of Operation Upminster, a two week trial to enforce parking regulations on the M25, between junctions 27 (M11) and 31 (Thurrock).

Parking on the hard shoulder of the M25 motorway is prohibited and can be subject to a penalty.

Highways England’s Emergency Planning Manager, Stephen Bush said:

“Parking on the hard shoulder hampers our ability to respond to incidents on the road network and has a direct impact on safety.

“It blocks the emergency access route along the hard shoulder. A fire in a vehicle can cause serious damage to the structure it is beneath.

“Litter and human waste is commonly left behind, requiring specialist cleansing and exposing road workers to additional risk.”

Officers interacted with 164 vehicles, including HGVs, vans and cars.

  • 117 vehicles were parked illegally
  • 78 Fixed Penalty Notices issues
  • 51 verbal warnings given
  • 30 broken down vehicles removed to a place of safety
  • 5 tickets issues (4 for mobile phone use and 1 for failure to wear a seat belt)
  • 2 drivers prosecuted for careless driving
  • 2 Red X traffic signal offences
  • £4,420 worth of fines issued.

The proactive stance taken regarding vehicles parking under structures on hard shoulders was possible due to the good working relationship between Connect Plus Services and Essex Police.

Both have previously worked together to target HGVs and other commercial vehicles that inadequately protect the loads they carry. The operation, which took place in March, is part of an on-going campaign to reduce the amount of waste dropped on the A13 and A1089 in Thurrock.