‘Appalling’ councils are fining Londoners £100m for driving through LTNs, says mother of girl killed by toxic air

15 November 2022, 13:09 | Updated: 16 November 2022, 06:37

Rosamund Kissi-Debrah will write to Sadiq Khan about ULEZ

By Phoebe Dampare Osei

“Labour councils are milking their residents” claims Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, the mother of the first person in the UK to die from high air pollution.

The mother of the first person in the UK to have air pollution listed as a cause of death says it is “appalling” that Londoners are being fined £100m for driving through Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs).

Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, the mother of Ella-Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, told Nick Ferrari at Breakfast on LBC that she would be writing to London Mayor Sadiq Khan about how LTNs can make matters worse, as her son is now ill.

In reaction to the news of the fines which covers Londoners driving through LTNs over the last three years, she said: “How appalling, I see Labour councils are milking their residents - over £100m you said.”

She added: “I’m going to be writing to Sadiq Khan about the LTNs. They need to go, they’ve made the main roads - and you would know this, the South Circular - like a lorry park! It’s been like this for two years.”

Nick said: “Of course this affected your life didn’t it? You lost little Ella as a result”, reminding listeners of the “tragic” loss of nine-year-old Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah who died in 2013 following a severe asthma attack, made worse by air pollution.

She became the first person in the UK to have air pollution listed as a cause of death.

Assistant Coroner Philip Barlow said: "Air pollution was a significant contributory factor to both the induction and exacerbations of her asthma.

"During the course of her illness between 2010 and 2013 she was exposed to levels of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter in excess of World Health Organisation guidelines."

You can watch the video below of Ms Adoo-Kissi-Debrah calling for the government to take action on air pollution in 2019.

Government Has To Tackle Air Pollution, Says Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah

Ms Adoo-Kissi-Debrah explained that her 15-year-old son is also now suffering with respiratory issues from pollution.

She said: “I’m going to write to the Mayor because he wants to roll out the Ultra Low Emission zones but it’s going to fail if all the main roads are choc-a-blocked…ULEZ will not work.”

She has also asked a leader of the respiratory team at King’s College Hospital, where her son has been receiving treatment, to write to the Prime Minister about the policy.

“During September 2020, the Low Traffic Neighbourhoods exacerbated it - he began to have breathing difficulties”, she said.

Ms Adoo-Kissi-Debrah added: “It’s not just him Nick, please let’s not make this just about me, it’s about the children that live around the South Circular.”

ULEZ was introduced in 2019 and initially covered Central London, but in October last year it was expanded to include all areas within the North and South Circular Roads.

More LTNs were introduced during the pandemic in 2020 and have been met with criticism from residents who were not properly consulted before bollards were put in at the ends of some roads.

One Twitter user shared their disapproval of them suggesting it was slowing down emergency services, while another said there was no need for Londoners to drive.

You can listen to Sadiq Khan's Clear The Air on Global Player.

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