A driver who swerved into a bus lane to avoid a car that seemed to have broken down was shocked to receive a fine from the council.

Amin Khan was driving along a stretch of the A5 Edgware Road in Colindale on September 9 when he noticed a car at a standstill just ahead of him.

Faced with a choice of pulling into the oncoming traffic or undertaking in the empty bus lane, Mr Khan quickly decided the second option was the safest.

But despite only entering a short stretch of the bus lane, he was sent a £65 penalty charge notice (PCN) from Barnet Council.

Mr Khan challenged the decision, claiming he had been forced into the move because the car in front of him looked to have broken down and there was no-one in the driver’s seat.

He sent photographic evidence to back up his appeal – but the council initially refused to back down.

Mr Khan said: “If I went in the right-hand lane, I would be going into oncoming cars. On the left side, there were no buses in the lane.

“There wasn’t much time to make the decision. I decided the bus lane was the safer option.”

Mr Khan, who lives in Haringey, said there were no bus lane signs close to his workplace, Utility Warehouse, so he was not aware of the restrictions.

Parking guru Derek Dishman, who blogs as Mr Mustard, pointed out that a 2006 Barnet Council traffic order says people are allowed to enter bus lanes to avoid accidents.

Barnet Council has now cancelled the PCN due to the “unusual circumstances” in which it was issued.

A council spokesperson said: “Drivers can expect to receive a PCN if they enter the bus lane when they are not supposed to.

“However, in this instance, it would appear that Mr Khan was doing so to avoid a car that was stationary in the middle of the road.

“Therefore, on this occasion, we are prepared to cancel his PCN in light of the unusual circumstances.”