A MOTORIST overturned his parking fine with the Observer's help after claiming a parking warden should have spotted a valid pay-and-display ticket among a folder full of used ones.
Driver Michael Addis received a £60 penalty through the post after parking his vehicle in Cambridge Road in North Harrow on December 30 to go and get his hair cut.
The 58-year-old claimed the parking attendant ought to have seen that lying among a folder of old car park tickets he leaves on his dashboard was a valid pay-and-display ticket (pictured) that he obtained that day to entitle him to an hour's free stay.
The warden did take a snap of the windscreen, a copy of which was enclosed with the fine, but it was not until the Observer made enquiries that the council took a second look, and after considering Mr Addis' own photographic evidence, cancelled the penalty.
Mr Addis, who works at the Ministry of Defence at RAF Northolt, said: “It seems you've had a word and they have dome something immediately.”
He added: “The person who issued with ticket could have had a closer look and even if he didn't see it, as soon as this matter was queried, they should have looked into it, particularly when I pointed out exactly where the valid ticket was.
“It seems to me they are not taking any care about issuing these tickets at all and, if a ticket is issued, it's dealt with appallingly. This cancellation letter is written by a Ms Solanki, yet another parking enforcement assistant. That's now four or five different officers who have dealt with this matter, and not one of them had dealt effectively with it.
“I would expect each ticket to be dealt with by a particular person and that one person keeps abreast of all developments but it seems to me there's no co-ordination.”
He explained the need for the folder on the dashboard.
“I won't want loose tickets falling down into the vents of my vehicle and littering the car. By putting them on the card, they don't move or blow around. In fact, I may pursue charging the council for storage of THEIR tickets.”
Fern Silverio, divisional director of collections and housing benefits, said: “On closer inspection of the photos we accept that the motorist had a
valid ticket and we will be writing to him to cancel the penalty. This should have been picked up before but the motorist made it incredibly hard for the parking attendant and subsequently our parking officers, to spot the ticket.
“We take a common sense approach to parking enforcement in Harrow but would also ask the motorist to use his common sense when displaying his tickets in future.”