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Transport: Keeping Britain Moving

Everyone understands the frustration of being stuck in a traffic jam or going nowhere on a delayed train or bus. UKIP will improve our existing transport infrastructure instead of investing in vanity projects such as HS2 and the environmentally destructive third runway at Heathrow. 
Britain’s prosperity depends upon an operational road system and reliable public transport networks. When transport goes wrong, it has an impact on our economy and our businesses, and makes life miserable and stressful for those experiencing delays and cancellations. UKIP will get the basics right, and not waste hundreds of billions of pounds on unnecessary transport projects.   
UKIP WILL SCRAP HS2 Rail travel is essential but HS2 is not. This High Speed Rail project is unaffordable, requires massive borrowing, will blight people’s homes, and destroy valuable habitats. Spending £75 billion just to save a few minutes between London and Leeds is ludicrous and, we think, unethical.  
UKIP will put HS2 out of its misery. We will invest in upgrading existing main line services to create additional capacity, expand electrification, and improve east-west rail services and connections across the north of England. This will be infrastructure that genuinely supports the economic and industrial regeneration of the region. A slogan, ‘ The Northern Powerhouse,’ achieves nothing.
ENDING ROAD TOLLS Tolling increases costs to business and the public, and adds an additional unfair burden on the already highly taxed road user. Road tolls are modern-day highway robbery, and UKIP will aim to remove existing tolls from publicly owned roads and block the introduction of new toll roads. 
UKIP opposes the proposed new Thames Crossing in Thurrock and will look to re-open a consultation for a new crossing further east. This will include the option for a crossing through Canvey Island, linking the A130 to the M2 in Kent.
SUPPORT THE TRANSITION TO ZERO EMISSION VEHICLES Electrically propelled vehicles are now a serious option for many families but the charging infrastructure is not keeping pace. UKIP will support the installation of rapid charging stations in towns and cities, and encourage off street parking and charging provision in all new housing and industrial developments through the local planning process.
DEFENDING  DIESEL DRIVERS In the 1990s, the EU and our government promoted diesel vehicles, claiming they were more environmentally friendly because they produced less carbon dioxide. Incentives such as higher taxes on petrol and cuts to Vehicle Excise Duty for diesel cars worked and diesel car ownership shot up. The ‘experts,’ however, have changed their advice. 
Policy has now U-turned. Punitive taxes are being slapped on diesel cars and there are calls to ban them from city centres. A scrappage scheme giving diesel car owners up to £2,000 to get rid of their vehicles has also been introduced, and UKIP supports this; however, we will combine it with an incentive scheme encouraging drivers to exchange their vehicles for electric or hybrid models. 
UKIP will prevent diesel drivers from being penalised through higher taxes, parking fees, or emissions’ zone charging. People bought their vehicles in good faith on government advice. Milking them now for money that simply goes into the Treasury is unacceptable.  
SAVING RURAL  BUS SERVICES Rural bus services are vital for those living in the countryside who do not have the financial means 
or the ability to drive. UKIP will provide start-up grants to support community bus operators using smaller and more efficient buses where commercial operators have cut essential services. 
AIR PASSENGER DUTY Air Passenger Duty has risen rapidly since its introduction in 1994. This is a tax on holidays as well as an additional cost to business. We will freeze APD at current levels and, when possible in future, seek to reduce it with the long-term objective of scrapping it completely.
LONDON AIRPORTS AND THE SOUTH EAST Living under a flight path is damaging to health and wellbeing, and the expansion of Heathrow airport will make matters worse for many thousands more people. UKIP is dismayed the Conservatives have torn up their 2010 manifesto pledge not to go ahead with the third runway. 
However, there is a clear commercial need for additional 
airport capacity in the South East, and UKIP is delighted a £100 million investment plan to revive aviation at Manston Airport in Kent is now on the table. This would not have been possible without the tireless campaigning of UKIP councillors. An American logistics company has unveiled plans to acquire the 750-acre site, and use it as a base for at least a dozen aircraft. Thanet District Council is hoping to become a partner in a compulsory purchase order for the site. 
UKIP will continue to support the expansion of smaller regional airports. 
THE BRITDISC We will keep a record of all foreign vehicles entering the UK by introducing a windscreen mounted identification tag, which can be purchased prior to entry. This will help identify overseas drivers who break UK traffic laws and facilitate enforcement action, which can be taken prior to exit from the country. 
WE STAND BY OUR 2015 MANIFESTO PLEDGES TO: 
• Stop mandatory fitment of the e-call vehicle tracking system on new cars
• Exempt vehicles over 25 years old from Vehicle Excise Duty 
• Not allow speed cameras to be used as revenue-raisers for local authorities 
• Scrap the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence for professionally licensed haulage drivers