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11/16/2006
UK Parking Ticket Outrages Continue
Meter maids are ticketing the disabled, women trapped in elevators and firefighters.

Meter maid
Meter maids are issuing more tickets than ever to UK motorists, and many of the recipients are raising an alarm.

Northern Ireland Fire Brigades Union Executive Council Member Jim Barbour is complaining that meter maids are issuing tickets to firefighters who leave their clearly marked personal vehicles at a firestation while they are called out on emergencies.

"It beggars belief that firefighters en-route to emergency incidents, where they will have to place their lives at risk, are now to be subject to parking fines through no fault of their own," Barbour told BBC News.

The Roads Service denies issuing, "any instruction to NCP to specifically target vehicles being used by the fire brigade."

In Blackpool last month, Jeffrey Drake, 68, went to the Customer First Centre to renew his disabled parking permit. Drake, whose right leg was amputated in 2002, was told he could not receive the new permit unless he brought in the old one. He sent his nurse to retrieve his permit and, of course, his car was immediately slapped with a £30 (US $56) parking ticket. The surprise came when his appeal of the fine was rejected.

"I think the council is heartless if it makes me pay this fine when I am obviously genuinely disabled," Drake told Blackpool Today. "I have enough to put up with as it is."

In Liskeard, Cornwall, a woman was trapped in an apartment building elevator between 8pm and 2pm the following day. After that eighteen hour ordeal, the first thing she saw as she approached her vehicle was a £60 (US $112) parking ticket.

"We won't proceed with the fine," a police spokesman told The People. "It would be outrageous."

Source: Outcry over fire station tickets (BBC News (UK), 11/15/2006)

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