A DRIVER has called on Hounslow Council to refund fines to hundreds of motorists caught out because parking bays were 'too small'.
Mike Chadha has spent more than a year campaigning for spaces outside a parade of shops in Bath Road, near Hounslow West Tube station, to be widened.
Civic centre chiefs have finally agreed to redraw the lines to take account of larger car sizes and the new bays are due to be marked up soon, subject to consultation.
Mr Chadha claims this means any drivers fined for parking outside the old white lines deserves a refund because the spaces were too small.
However, the council insists the measure is merely a courtesy and the existing spaces are larger than legally required, hence no refund is necessary.
The council was unable to say how many drivers had been fined, like Mr Chadha, for parking with their wheels outside the white lines but he believes the figure may run into the hundreds.
"The bays aren't big enough and the fact the council's repainting the lines is
surely an admission of the fact," said Mr Chadha.
"There must be hundreds of people who have paid parking fines for parking outside the lines because they wouldn't have been able to open their doors otherwise. They deserve a refund."
A council spokesman said the 60-odd parking bays were all between 2.1m and 2.3m wide - well above the minimum dimensions specified in national parking regulations.
"The proposal is to re-mark the bays at 2.5m wide. Apart from listening to
the complaint and acting on this, the reason for the wider bays is that we acknowledge that there are now a greater number of larger vehicles in use than there were when the parking spaces were first introduced," he said.
"We have done this in a number of areas in Chiswick. The proposal for 2.5m wide bays will result in a reduction in the number of parking spaces and will be subject to formal consultation."
If no objections are received, he said, the bays are due to be re-marked in December.