6/25/2007UK: Meter Maids Hand Out Idling Tickets
Manchester, UK uses green as an excuse to ticket motorists for idling.
Motorists who pull to the side of the road in Manchester, UK face being slapped with tickets before they have a chance to feed a parking meter. On June 11, the city council gave meter maids the power to issue tickets for "unnecessary idling," "unlawful distribution of free literature," and littering. Motorists who allow their engine to cool down for a minute before getting out face an automatic £80 ($160) fine. The money is being collected under the auspices of improving the environment.
"Our aim to become the greenest city in the UK," said city Councillor Neil Swannick.
Motorists who pull over to avoid illegally talking on a cell phone while driving will instead be ticketed for idling. Drivers who keep the car running to run the heater on a cold morning will likewise be fined.
Two years ago, Manchester began issuing £20 (US $40) tickets to commercial vehicles, buses and taxis that idled "for more than a few minutes." The program generated enough revenue that officials decided to expand the program to cover all vehicles.