Drivers in the UK
owe a staggering $270 million in congestion charge fees, according to Transport for London
. Surprisingly enough, that figure comes even as the number of those attempting to avoid paying the fines has declined. In 2010, 52,103 drivers skipped out on paying, while that figure plopped down to 33,684 in 2011. Transport for London
says a "significant" amount of the owed money can be chalked up to diplomatic missions
that refuse to pay up. Authorities in the UK have begun pursuing offending countries through the International Court of Justice.
Then there are the private individuals who continue to hold out. Transport for London has sent out around 200,000 letters over the past three years warning delinquent drivers of the legal ramifications they could face for refusing to pay. The organization has the power to send bailiffs to collect the funds.
Despite the hefty amount of owed cash, Transport for London says it is satisfied both with the fine system and the protocols for non payment.