Scootering - - Kickstart -

Read­ers of the mo­tor­ing press and pop­u­lar me­dia could be for­given for think­ing that the re­cent ex­ten­sion of Paris’ Clean Air Zone (Crit’Air) to for­eign reg­is­tered ve­hi­cles had started some sort of mo­tor­ing apoc­a­lypse. While it’s true that life’s be­come much more com­pli­cated for hauliers and coach op­er­a­tors vis­it­ing the city, for the ma­jor­ity of Bri­tish scooter­ists ven­tur­ing over­seas there’s lit­tle im­pact – for now.

Clean air zone leg­is­la­tion was in­tro­duced in Paris on July 1, 2016 and from April 1, 2017, those laws will ap­ply to for­eign reg­is­tered ve­hi­cles. In brief, any ve­hi­cle en­ter­ing the Crit’Air zones in Paris, Greno­ble or Lyon be­tween the hours of 8am and 8pm must obtain and dis­play a vi­gnette (sticker) en­ter­ing with­out one at­tracts a fine of €70. This fig­ure’s im­por­tant as in French law it’s the amount at which non-pay­ment can be pun­ished by im­pris­on­ment. Ve­hi­cles first reg­is­tered be­fore Jan­uary 1, 1997, can’t be is­sued with a vi­gnette and are for­bid­den from en­ter­ing the zone dur­ing the day. Own­ers of ve­hi­cles reg­is­tered af­ter that date can ap­ply on­line or pur­chase one lo­cally – although the web­site is rather vague as to how an ‘on the day’ pur­chase works in prac­tice.

Un­less this year’s tour­ing hol­i­day re­volves around pho­tograph­ing your clas­sic scooter with the Eif­fel Tower as a back­drop, don’t panic and en­joy the trip. How­ever, in the long term, there’s no doubt that Crit’Air is wor­ry­ing. It sits at the thin end of a wedge – be­ing part of a growing move­ment that aims to con­trol pol­lu­tion by re­strict­ing the use of ve­hi­cles based on their age and en­gine type. There’s no doubt that ci­ties across Europe (and the UK) are mon­i­tor­ing the French scheme with in­ter­est. We’ll be look­ing at the po­ten­tial im­pact of this and other rel­e­vant leg­is­la­tion in fu­ture edi­tions. For more info visit:

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