The ZPAd air protection zone of Gers /Auch
On 04.08.2017, an order was signed by the Prefect of the Department of Gers introducing the Crit´Air Vignette within the department, which came into force on 18.09.2017.
The order contains a set of measures that can be applied in case of an air pollution peak. However, the peculiarity lies in the fact that, in the event of an air pollution peak, only the city or municipality within the department is described, in which the weather-dependent zone comes into force. A ZPAd (zone de protection de l'air départementale) is no local or regional air protection zone with clearly defined limits (ZPA), it applies to a whole department where driving restrictions can be temporary imposed. This requires a separate individual notification from the prefect or a representative. The Prefect of the Department of Gers determines which cities and municipalities are affected and to which extent. As a result, within the ZPAd zone of Gers, local, time-limited and variable traffic restrictions may be imposed, to which the vehicle owner must comply.
The Department of Gers is one of the 13 departments of the Occitan region and has 190,000 inhabitants on an area of about 6,300 km². The capital is Auch, which has about 22,000 inhabitants on an area of 72 km², where the Prefect has its seat.
In order to be prepared for any pollution peak, a temporary environmental zone has now also been introduced in the Department of Gers, which is mandatory for all vehicles in the event of persistent air pollution, in accordance with the prefectural order 32-2017-08-04-001.
Any violation of the badge requirement or traffic restrictions will be punished with a fine of 68 to 375 euros; if paying directly on site a little less. These fines are based on the articles L.325-1 to L.325-3 and R.411-19 of the French Road Traffic Code.
In case of an air pollution peak, the Prefecture of Gers provides a set of measures divided into several phases. After a pre-warning with no impact on road traffic, the first air pollution alarm is activated. This occurs if, based on the daily or hourly measurement of the responsible institution for air quality, the emission level of 50/80 μg / m³ for particulate matter or 180/240 μg / m³ for ozone or 300/500 μg / m³ for sulphur dioxide or 200/400 μg / m³ for nitrogen dioxide has been exceeded. As a result, the road speed within the ZPAd environmental zone has to be reduced by 20 km/h.
If, in the following days, one of the above mentioned pollutant values exceeds the indicated values, a second air pollution alarm („niveau d’alerte N2“) is activated with possible traffic restrictions, which are not specified in the order.
Special rules for pollution levels
Generally, the Crit´Air badge classes, which may be excluded from circulation, are previously set in the order of the corresponding prefect. In this case, information about the affected classes is only disclosed in case of an air pollution peak. However, the Crit´Air badge classes E, 1, 2 e 3 are not likely to be affected by traffic restrictions.
The borders of the environmental zone of Gers
Generally, the border of a ZPAd zone in France is set in the order of the respective Prefect.
In this case, however, the entire area of the Department of Gers may be affected. Only in case of an air pollution peak, the exact extension of the zone affected by traffic restrictions will be communicated.
In any case, it should be noted that, in the event of an air pollution alarm, the highways N21 (between Agen and Tarbes) and N124 (from and to Toulouse) may be affected.
Table overview of the environmental zone
What are ZCR, ZPA and ZPAd environmental zones in France?
What are ZCR, ZPA and ZPAd environmental zones in France and how do they work? What does this mean for foreign drivers and how the Green-Zones app be of help? You can find the answers in the menu under French environmental zones.