A new sign that bars trucks below the Euro 6 emissions standard from entering Stresemannstrasse in Hamburg. Photo: DPA
The city of Hamburg this week put up signs on its streets warning motorists of diesel restricted zones – an indication to residents that they are taking the diesel driving bans seriously.
Limited diesel driving bans were introduced for two busy roads in the Hanseatic city after a top court in February ruled that German cities could impose the bans to combat air pollution.
Almost immediately after the verdict, the port city became the first to announce plans for a driving ban on Max-Brauer-Allee and Stresemannstrasse in the Altona district from late April.
The city subsequently made signs which warn people of diesel restricted zones and possible alternative routes. This week the signs started to make an appearance in the Altona district.
The ban in Max-Brauer-Allee applies to all vehicles that do not meet the Euro 6 emissions standard, while the ban in Stresemannstrasse only bars trucks which are below the Euro 6 standard.
Excluded from the driving ban are residents and their visitors, as well as ambulances, garbage trucks and delivery vehicles.
Nonetheless, the ban has not officially started and an exact start date has not yet been set, reports Spiegel Online.
The Hamburg Ministry of the Environment and Energy (BUE) expects the ban in Hamburg to be implemented the week after next.
Motorists in breach of the ban can expect to cough up fines of €25 for cars and €75 for trucks.
There are no plans for further diesel driving bans in Hamburg, according to the BUE.
But when the Hanseatics citys bans are officially put in place, it will be the first German city to implement diesel driving bans, meaning that other cities could follow.
As the ruling obligates Baden-Württemberg and North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) to consider driving bans, the two smog-clogged state capitals of Stuttgart and Düsseldorf must seek to control air pollution limits as quickly as possible.
Stuttgart expects initial diesel driving bans to be implemented at the end of the year.