A fire engine pictured in Blackheath that appeared unable to get through modal filters was assessing a new bollard rather than on its way to an incident.  

Last month, as part of its Covid-19 emergency transport measures, Lewisham Council put planters at the end of rat-run South Row where it meets Prince of Wales Road in a bid to encourage walking and cycling. 

The initial plans were scrapped after a surge of complaints about safety, traffic being diverted onto other roads, and drivers ignoring the barriers and driving around them.  

Instead a collapsible bollard was placed in the road to stop drivers coming through – though some are still being spotted driving onto the green.  

The scheme has received a lot of positive feedback, particularly around safety and air pollution reduction.  

However, among the concerns raised by people who object to the changes is the fear emergency services will not be able to get through at speed.  

On Saturday a photo of a fire engine and crew seemingly unable to get past the bollard emerged online, but London Fire Brigade said the crew was just assessing it.  

A spokesperson said: “I have spoken to the crews pictured and they confirmed that they were not on their way to an incident and were not blocked by the modal filters on the road.  

“They were in the area just taking a look as road restrictions had been put in place.” 

A spokesperson for the council said the same.  

“Details of all new bollards were shared with the emergency services prior to implementation.  

“Following liaison with the Fire Brigade we understand that their crews were asked to undertake ‘visual audits’ of the installations once implemented, so they could factor this in to their response planning,” she said.

The bollard in question has been temporarily removed since for a separate issue, which will be made public soon.