Almost 950 Sheffield motorists are to be refunded £57,000 in fines after being caught on camera driving through a bus gate which signs said they could use.
A diversion directing drivers to pass legally through a suspended bus gate in London Road, near the Queens Road junction, was intended to be operational only in the evenings, during roadworks.
But the signs were left up mistakenly around the clock for a month, resulting in 946 penalties as cameras caught motorists.
The council apologised this week, and has cancelled every fine between July 8 and August 7. It is also writing to drivers who have already paid to offer a refund.
One motorist, Laurence Nair, aged 28, of Albert Road, Heeley, received four fines in two weeks, totalling £240.
He told the council: “I am shocked by the complete lack of intelligence and competence clearly present at the council.
“You have caused me distress by issuing me a bus lane notice when there was clearly a diversion and a sign that said ‘bus lane camera not in use’. You have been completely misleading people, allowing them to go down a different route and then fining them. It is entrapment.”
Mr Nair said each ticket “must cost about £2 to £3 in administration costs”, wasting taxpayers’ money. He added: “I’m really happy the fines are being cancelled. I knew I wasn’t wrong in the first place.
Council cabinet member Coun Leigh Bramall said: “On this occasion we must hold our hands up and apologise to the drivers, whose penalty charges will be cancelled.”