Transport for London (TfL) has agreed to pay compensation to the van owners who were wrongly advised to change their vehicles. The managing body issued inaccurate information to van owners regarding compliance changes to London's Low Emission Zone, and as a result a number of companies unnecessarily paid to have their vans upgraded. Dr Jane Martin, the local government ombudsman, issued a report on the matter this week. In the report, TfL were noted as having made 'several fundamental errors in notifying ownersî including failures to make adequate checks or to give prominent warnings that owners should carry out their own checks. Five owners made complaints to the ombudsman, and a further 30 made direct complaints to TfL. All of the owners will be compensated by the body. TfL had claimed that the vehicles owned could not be used in the Zone after January 3rd this year unless the drivers were prepared to pay a daily charge of £100, and a further £500 penalty if the charge was not paid. As part of the notification, TfL advised either modifying the current vans in order to meet the new requirements, or purchasing new vehicles. However, the information given was incorrect, with the relevant vans being either already compliant with the scheme, or not within its scope. One of the companies _ a scaffolding firm _ scrapped or replaced three of its vans and part exchanged four others during the relevant period. However, once the purchase of seven new vans had been completed, the company owners discovered that TfL had apparently 'changed its mindî about the vans, and decided they were 'now compliantî. Dr Martin acknowledged that TfL had carried out research on which vehicles were likely to be affected by the Low Emission Zone, and had tried to contact owners in order to notify them. However, because some of the information sent out was incorrect, the vehicle owners were burdened with the unnecessary expense. Dr Martin said: "Prior to commissioning the DVLA to send out notification letters, it [TfL] did not complete adequate checks with manufacturers about whether vehicles which were manufactured before January 1, 2002, had been fitted out to Euro 3 standard. 'It was aware that some vehicles of the same type had different unladen weights and this was fundamental to whether they were subject to the LEZ restrictions. 'It has told me that at the time the DVLA wrote to vehicle owners full information on the weights of vehicles was not available, was incomplete or not available from the manufacturers."