I’m slightly stunned. I’ve had unfair parking tickets before, I’ve fought them, I’ve won. But this time – well, it was all thankfully a bit easy really. So if you get an unfair ticket, let it be inspiration to not just pay up, but explain..
This ticket came out of the blue, through the post last week. It told me I had parked on a zig-zag and owed £60, doubling to £120 if I didn’t pay up. I had no memory of it, but there was a still image and a link to a video, so I had a gander.
Then it came back to me. I had been riding on my scooter, skidded slightly (stayed upright, thankfully) and it felt like I had a flat tyre. I pulled up to check, completely unaware it was at the edge of zig-zag lines. The video clearly showed me walking round the bike, kicking and squeezing the tyres.
Then, as it seemed a slow puncture, after two minutes – having never left the bike – I drove off slowly to the nearest garage to pump the pressure up (and later fixed the puncture). That’s what happened, so it’s pretty much what I said – I’d stopped to ensure my bike was safe, and if they looked at the video they’d see it was clear.
Then today, I got a letter saying:
Having carefully considered the points you have raised, I am pleased to inform you that your representation has been accepted and the PCN has been cancelled… as it is evident that you were worried about your well-being and the functionality of the vehicle."
What impressed me about this was that in the past when I had an obviously unfair ticket, I had to push hard to get a refund (see my Parking Fines, Refunds Do Happen blog) and risk a doubling of the fine. Many people find they have to go all the way to an independent tribunal panel – a sham, as 50% who get there are upheld, a rate far too high for appeals on public body decisions.
This time though, plaudits to the City of Westminster for a fair decision immediately.
PS. Before someone asks, no, it wasn’t a ‘do you know who I am?’ thing – the details I gave didn’t have any way to notify what my work is.