The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Saturday, 16 November

Clamping Down On Rogue Carpark Charging

Car park

Finally there has been a boost for drivers but not for carpark owners as the government backs a clamp down on rogue parking firms.

Government is to support new legislation aimed at raising standards in the private parking industry and giving car owners new legal protections from unscrupulous private parking operators, Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government Sajid Javid has said.

 

Fleeced

Evidence shows that, in total, nearly 10,000 people approached the Citizen’s Advice Bureau for advice on private parking tickets last year and parking firms are issuing almost 13 times more tickets than decade ago.

Drivers are increasingly complaining of inconsistent practices, substandard signage, confusing appeals processes and intimidating payment letters.

Under government plans, which will deliver on a manifesto commitment to tackle rogue parking operators, a stringent new Code of Practice will be developed by the Secretary of State in conjunction with motorists groups and other experts.

Those falling foul of the rules would then be blocked from accessing driver data and issuing fines, effectively forcing them out of the industry.

These measures, introduced in a Bill by Sir Greg Knight MP, build on action government has already taken to tackle rogue private parking operators, including banning wheel clamping and towing and over-zealous parking enforcement by councils and parking wardens.

Sajid Javid, said: "For too long drivers have suffered from unjust fines at the hands of dodgy parking firms. We need a fairer, clearer and more consistent system that brings the small minority of unscrupulous operators in line with those who are behaving appropriately. That is why government is putting the brakes on these rogue operators and backing new laws that will put a stop to aggressive behaviour and provide a simpler way for drivers to appeal fines."

Industry bodies have lined up to support the Bill, which received its Second Reading in the House of Commons on Friday Feb 2.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: "Motorists will be delighted that the government is throwing its weight behind Sir Greg Knight’s move to bring some much needed regulatory rigour to the world of private parking.

"We all hoped the ban on clamping would end the sharp practices that had come to plague private parking but the fact that companies are issuing millions of penalty tickets annually is clear evidence that something is still going badly awry.

"Drivers don’t want a parking free-for-all but they do want a system that is fair to all parties and that’s what a code of practice set by government – rather than the industry itself – should bring about.

Andrew Pester, Chief Executive of the British Parking Association, said: "We welcome Sir Greg’s Bill that aims to drive consistency and fairness in the private parking sector. Our membership already complies with a robust Code of Practice which we continuously seek to improve through consultation. A single, mandatory code of practice across the whole sector is important to ensure that unscrupulous providers don’t undermine the parking sector with bad practice. As the leading authority in the sector we shall continue to work closely with government and key stakeholders to press for progress towards a positive outcome for all."

Picture: "Drivers don’t want a parking free-for-all but they do want a system that is fair to all parties."

Article written by Robin Snow

Share



Related Articles

HSE Injury And Ill-Health Statistics Released

October 30 saw the HSE releases the annual injury and ill-health statistics for Great Britain showing that 28.2 million working days were lost due to work-related illness...

 Read Full Article
Top Tips To Avoid Car-Jacking

Since the summer when two Arsenal footballers were the subject of an attempted car-jacking, there has continued to be a  rise in car thefts using the method...

 Read Full Article
Hotel All At Sea Over Asbestos

Two companies have been fined. RJW Building Solutions, a contractor carrying out refurbishment work at the Sea Hotel in South Shields and Hotel 52, the client, were...

 Read Full Article
Leak And Ladder Lead To Bad Mix At Chemical Co

An employee inspecting a steam leak at height fell to the ground when the ladder he was on failed. The employee of Vertellus Specialties UK fell two metres and suffered a...

 Read Full Article
Lending A Hand Costs Security Guard His Fingers

A security guard has lost his fingers after being asked by a groundworks contractor to lend a hand to do a job he was not employed or skilled to do. Elsewhere, seven...

 Read Full Article
Facial Recognition Now Available - But Trouble Brewing Ahead

A commercially available facial recognition system has just been launched. Meanwhile, developer Argent could be in hot water for using LFR and both the ICO and a...

 Read Full Article
Bristol Rovers To Find New Spark At Airport

Bristol Airport has switched on the power for electric vehicle drivers with the installation of a ten-bay charging zone, along with the capability to extend in the...

 Read Full Article
Sort The Confusion - Falling Recycling Rates Blamed On Lack Of Understanding

Waste giant Biffa has called for UK recycling confusion to be sorted, saying that inconsistency and confusion in labelling, sorting and collections are preventing UK...

 Read Full Article
Well Blow Me Down - Director Fined For Being Blown Off Roof

A director of a construction has seen his company (along with two others) fined when he was blown off an unsafe roof.  The three firms, Bowmer and Kirkland,...

 Read Full Article
Child Killed By Badly Installed/Maintained Falling Gate

An electric gate company has been convicted after a young boy was crushed and killed by a falling electric gate. The installers and subsequent maintainers never spotted...

 Read Full Article