A full scale review of the London Lorry Control Scheme (LLCS) will start shortly, with a possible overhaul of the timings and the vehicles that are currently exempt.

More than 30 years after the scheme came into operation, London Councils said it would review current signage requirements and the excluded route network’s boundaries, as well as “examine the current effectiveness of the scheme, compliance levels and times of operation to establish whether it is as effective as it could be”.

The announcement came as latest figures showed that 4,314 operators and 679 drivers were fined during 2015/16 for breaching the LLCS.

A spokeswoman said: “London Councils still believes that the scheme plays a vital role in controlling the unnecessary movement of vehicles over 18 tonnes on London’s roads during weekends and night times.

“How effective the scheme is and what more needs to be achieved to ensure both greater compliance and enhanced environmental benefits for Londoners will be assessed upon completion of the review.”

Natalie Chapman, FTA head of policy for London and the South East, said London Councils was under mounting pressure to look at scheme, because vehicles had become quieter and there was renewed focus on enabling HGVs to deliver at different times of day.

“There are some unintended consequences,” she added. “Some of the vehicles go on very long detours, so there’s a cost for operators, an increase in fuel consumption and an increase in emissions.

"It has an impact on London’s air quality too, at a time when air quality is a focus.”