Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Motorist fined for turning in car park

Bolton Evening News
Thursday March 2, 2006
by John Fahey
A Motorist has been fined £95 - for reversing into a company car park.
Gary Haslam reversed into the entrance of the car park in Mawdsley Street, Bolton, to pick up his wife, Heather, from work.
But he was forced to wait before he could drive off because a lorry was being unloaded.
And because that kept him in the car park for more than three minutes, he received the fine.
The first he knew about it was when a letter arrived at his Markland Hill home from Buckinghamshire-based parking enforcement firm G24. It had bought Mr Haslam's details from the DVLA database for £2.50 and said a camera operated by G24 had filmed him in January. The car park belongs to Robert Fairhurst and Sons Chartered Surveyors, which employs G24.

Mr Haslam, aged 43 said: "Nobody asked me to leave, I didn't get out of the car or turn off the engine. The car wasn't parked and there was no confrontation with anyone.
"If I had parked and gone shopping then I would hold my hands up and pay. But this is an injustice and I am taking legal advice."
He also hit out at the DVLA for selling his details to G24, which keeps all the money generated from fines.
Mr Haslam said: "I am surprised and angry that companies can get personal details from the DVLA.
"It's a government body and there should be an element of trust."
There has been a boom in such "ticketless" parking fines over the past year in Britain, many handed out for overstaying.
No tickets are placed on the windscreen and drivers can incur several fines before they realise they have done anything wrong.
Drivers in Britain are legally required to give the DVLA their up-to-date address.
Private car park companies have the right to obtain this information if they wish to track down drivers and demand fines.
Laws introduced three years ago, under the Road Vehicles (Registration and Licensing) Regulations 2002, allow car park owners to request such details.
But the practice has raised questions about the way personal information held by the Government is sold.
And Transport Minister Stephen Ladyman has launched an investigation into the sale of drivers' details after it was discovered the DVLA's approved customer list includes another parking enforcement firm which is run by two men currently in prison for extorting money from motorists.
Surveyors Robert Fairhurst and Sons installed the camera to detect vehicles in the car park for more than three minutes. Robert Fairhurst said: "We were very annoyed when anyone and everyone parked on the land. We used to have a clamping system but that was too confrontational.
"I don't want to go down the route of intervening but Mr Haslam's case does seem to be a one-off.
"We don't get any money from the system. It is simply so our staff can park," he said.
G24 managing director Adrian King declined to comment.

No comments:

Blog Archive

only search Neil Herron Blog