UNDER-FIRE council chiefs are facing fresh criticism over Worcester's traffic census chaos - after using Amazon vouchers in a prize draw for those pulled over.

In a bid to make sure motorists across the city didn't drive off without doing the survey, a 'sweetener' of a £100 Amazon voucher was being offered in a draw.

But your Worcester News can reveal how the tactic enraged some drivers, who say the county council should not be endorsing a company facing so much flak for dodging Corporation Tax.

In June a powerful House of Commons committee urged the public to boycott the firm, which paid just £4.2m in tax last year, despite selling goods worth £4.3 billion, with its headquarters based in Seattle.

MP Margaret Hodge, chair of the public accounts committee, has called it an "outrage" in a saga which has rumbled on for months.

Some Worcester motorists say they drove off precisely because they were offered the chance to win an Amazon voucher.

Jim Norris, 66, of Broadwas, said: "I was caught up in the traffic jams and as soon as I saw they were offering Amazon vouchers, I thought 'this is utterly disgraceful'.

"I handed the survey straight back and told them why, to me that is not an incentive, it's the opposite."

Fellow driver Scott Brennan, 31, of Worcester, who was also pulled over, said: "They said to me the prize was either a £100 donation to a charity of my choice or the £100 Amazon voucher.

"I wasn't having it, I actually thought that was worse than causing all of the delays, it's a joke."

The council defended the move by saying prize draws are "common" and encourage people to take part.

A spokesman said: "The private company which was employed to complete the survey offered motorists who took part the chance to enter a draw to win a £100 Amazon voucher.

"It is common for companies to offer such an incentive to complete a survey, as this generally increases the response rate.

"However, the council did not specify any particular company and we have received no direct complaints.

"We would like again to thank everyone who took part in the survey."

The census, which took place on Wednesday, October 22, led to gridlock in Worcester, with journeys between Malvern and Worcester taking around 90 minutes.

People were pulled over and asked four questions, with the data being used to prepare fresh bids for Government funding towards roads.

Amazon is able to pay low tax because when shoppers in Europe buy from its websites, the payment is taken by a subsidiary based in Luxembourg.