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Drivers handed 35,000 parking tickets a day

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Drivers handed 35,000 parking tickets a day

That’s according to the RAC Foundation

Drivers are being handed an average of more than 35,000 parking tickets by private companies every day as the wait for the Government to impose new rules on the sector reaches five years, according to new analysis.

Motoring research charity the RAC Foundation said many drivers could feel “badly let down” by the delay in ministers introducing a code of conduct aimed at eradicating some of the sector’s worst practices despite legislation being passed.

Its analysis of Government data found 9.7 million tickets were issued to drivers by private parking companies in Britain between April and December last year, which is equivalent to nearly 35,300 every day.

Each ticket can cost drivers up to £100.

Private parking businesses have been accused of using misleading and confusing signs, aggressive debt collection and unreasonable fees.

The Parking (Code of Practice) Bill received Royal Assent five years ago on March 15 2019, but the code has not be implemented.

At least 32.2 million tickets have been issued by private companies in Britain since the legislation was passed.

The code was originally laid before Parliament in February 2022 and due to come into force across Britain by the end of 2023.

It included halving the cap on tickets for most parking offences to £50, creating a fairer appeals system, higher standards for signage and banning the use of aggressive language on tickets.

But the code was withdrawn by the Government in June 2022 following a legal challenge by parking companies, and has not been reintroduced.

A new call for evidence run by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) closed on October 8 last year.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “Since March 2019 many things have happened. The five years have seen us through four prime ministers, a pandemic and a cost-of-living crisis.

“But what we’ve not seen is the implementation of the protections MPs were queuing up to support when the Parking (Code of Practice) Act made its way onto the statute book all those years ago.

“Ministers would do well to consider how their performance looks to the many millions of drivers who’ve been issued with a ticket since the law was enacted.

“What’s needed is a swift dose of hurry-up treatment in this election year if those voters are not to be left feeling badly let down.”

The analysis of parking tickets is based on the number of records obtained from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) by companies chasing vehicle owners for alleged infringements in private car parks, such as at shopping centres, leisure facilities and motorway service areas.

They do not include council-run car parks.

Some 185 parking management businesses requested vehicle owner records between April and December last year.

ParkingEye was the most active, buying nearly 569,000 records.

The DVLA charges private companies £2.50 per record.

The agency says its fees are set to recover the cost of providing the information and it does not make any money from the process.

A DLUHC spokesperson said: “We remain committed to introducing the private parking code of practice to help improve the regulation of the private parking system.

“We have recently concluded a call for evidence and will consult on elements of the code in due course.

“The Government continues to work with the industry and consumer groups to reissue the code as quickly as possible.”

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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