Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Insufficient time to leave the car park
FightBack Forums > Queries > Private Parking Tickets & Clamping
SamS
I have received a parking charge notice from PARK WITH EASE for a private car park. An ANPR recorded by arrival at 10:27 and departure at 10:44. The first 10 minutes parking are free.
When I attempted to pay, the payment was refused as it was still within the free time period.

I have disputed the notice on the grounds that:

1. Payment, when offered, was refused as no charge had been incurred.
2. Insufficient time was allowed after offering payment for me to return to my vehicle and leave the car park. (This unfortunately discloses that I was the driver).
3. The Charge Notice did not arrive within 15 days (in fact it took 24 days). However, because points 1 and 2 disclose I was the driver, they make the point that POFA does not apply.
4. The charge is punitive and this is unfair within the Unfair Contract Terms Act.
5. The sum of £50 (reduced to £25 if paid within 14 days) is disproportionate.

As expected, they have dismissed these grounds.

Has anyone got any experience of fighting a charge on these grounds?

Does anyone have similar experience
farmerboy
Have they included a popla code?
freddy1
do you think they will fight this £25 charge , if its going to cost them close to £30 to go to POPLA , let them bring it on , , just noticed they are members of the micky mouse , kangaroo club , have they given you the correct procedure for starting a appeal ?
Gan
That's the second thread with seen in the last few days where an OP was unable to pay properly because of a failure of their equipment

http://forums.pepipoo.com/index.php?showtopic=100464

This is the link to the MSE thread.

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum...N-IPC-APPEAL-**

See Post #28 regarding an appeal that succeeded with IAS

Don't see why you shouldn't quote it in your appeal
The Parking Companies and Gladstones are quick enough to refer to and quote an OP's thread when they recognise it
Skiddaw
With Park With Ease you pay on departure and the OP has tried to leave and pay before the electronics would accept the money. Quite clever that the 'grace' period comes at the start of the parking event. The OP has fallen between 'two stools' and the ANPR has caught the driver leaving after the free period has expired even though an attempt to pay was made.

You can pay 24 hours after on-line and any driver should always check if they ever use one of these car parks to do so after the event. If you are a tourist this isn't always possible as you are often away from internet access.
Lynnzer
The only way the IPC will give an acceptance to appeal on this is for you to do the same again and have it all recorded on camcorder.
That would show the inadequacy of the system. At worst it'll be good ammunition if the case ended up in court.
Remember you have to prove your case with this mob, not the other way round for the PPC to prove their case.

It would be useful if you could include here some pictures of entry signs, signs on the ticket machine etc. They generally have some sort of problem.
SamS
Thanks to everyone for your quick responses.

Unfortunately, as I was in the Lake District National Park which is over 5 hours from home, I have no way of repeating the exercise or photographing any signs. I take the point about complaining to LDNP and will probably do so. Also, these bozos use IAS not POPLA. I suppose that I still need to appeal even though my expectation is that it will not be heard fairly.

However, my main defence has to rely on the following:

  1. Payment was attempted but refused by the parking payment machine because it stated that the free parking period had not expired.
  2. The ANPR recorded only the time of entry and departure, NOT the time of actual parking.


  • Leaving aside any question of whether the charge is reasonable or is punitive, in law, is the contract deemed as fulfilled if payment has been attempted and refused?
  • Also does one have a reasonable expectation that one would be granted a reasonable time after attempting to pay to return to one's car and leave the car park before any excess charge should be applied?


All your answers are much appreciated.
Skiddaw
OP What was your location? Some Park With Ease sites are Lowther Estates and they are not known for their generous spirit.
SamS
QUOTE (Skiddaw @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 11:00) *
OP What was your location? Some Park With Ease sites are Lowther Estates and they are not known for their generous spirit.


This was in a location called "White Moss" by Rydal Water.

QUOTE (Skiddaw @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 04:51) *
With Park With Ease you pay on departure and the OP has tried to leave and pay before the electronics would accept the money. Quite clever that the 'grace' period comes at the start of the parking event. The OP has fallen between 'two stools' and the ANPR has caught the driver leaving after the free period has expired even though an attempt to pay was made.

You can pay 24 hours after on-line and any driver should always check if they ever use one of these car parks to do so after the event. If you are a tourist this isn't always possible as you are often away from internet access.


Very useful advice for the future. Unfortunately, it doesn't help in this instance as I had no reason to check, having been told that there was no charge. Surely, there must be a grace period after payment has been offered (whether accepted or not)?
Skiddaw
Yes, Lowther Estates. If I'm passing this week I will get some photos for you. I have a feeling there are going to be a lot more posts regarding this very popular car park this summer.
Gan
Any parking company that brought a claim in this situation would be laughed out of court
I assume that the signs made no mention that there was a tight window when you had to return to the car park to make the payment

Could just send them a postal order for the payment with a stiff note that it's in full and final settlement
Make clear that the reason that payment was not made at the time was entirely the result of their perverse payment system that was not explained on any signs

Give them seven days to return it or the matter is closed
This gives time to make an IAS appeal if you can be bothered
SamS
QUOTE (Skiddaw @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 11:49) *
Yes, Lowther Estates. If I'm passing this week I will get some photos for you. I have a feeling there are going to be a lot more posts regarding this very popular car park this summer.



Skiddaw, I'm most grateful. On leaving, I had a quick glance around for the ANPR cameras but they didn't appear to be obvious. As far as I recall, the only signs were by the payment machine.
bomilo
Funnily enough I was there in April this year, and took a pic of the T&C's (not that I do it that often, being a pepipoo addict or anything!)



B
Lynnzer
So the signs wrong then isn't it?
It isn't pay on exit from the parking space at all. It's pay when you leave the site which is completely different. That would be impossible anyway as you are on the move.
Be it a couple of seconds or whatever, there will inevitably be a delay of some sort between the ticketing machine and leaving site.
bomilo
Unless the sign has changed since April, the main point to walk away with is the free parking time.

20 minutes.

Not 10.

B
hcandersen
The OP does not dispute that they were on site for more than the permitted free period because according to them they tried to pay.

They had a further 48 hours in which to pay after leaving the site.

It does not seem logical to not pay within this period having already accepted that a payment was due.

OP, how would you deal with this central conflict in your account?

Having accepted that payment was due, then does anyone believe that minor discrepancies in wording or process (assuming such exist) would carry overriding weight at appeal?
bomilo
The OP said they were clocked on the ANPR arriving at 10:27 and departing at 10:44.

I make that 17 minutes.

B
SamS
QUOTE (bomilo @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 14:14) *
Funnily enough I was there in April this year, and took a pic of the T&C's (not that I do it that often, being a pepipoo addict or anything!)

B


Bomilo,Thank you, that's perfect. The notice says "follow instructions on the screen" which is exactly what I did. biggrin.gif

QUOTE (bomilo @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 16:14) *
The OP said they were clocked on the ANPR arriving at 10:27 and departing at 10:44.

I make that 17 minutes.

B


That may or may not be the case but it doesn't alter the fact that the machine said no charge was due and I left the parking space as soon as I returned to my car. Whatever time it took was not spent parked or loitering in the car park.
jdh
QUOTE (hcandersen @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 15:03) *
The OP does not dispute that they were on site for more than the permitted free period because according to them they tried to pay.

They had a further 48 hours in which to pay after leaving the site.

It does not seem logical to not pay within this period having already accepted that a payment was due.

OP, how would you deal with this central conflict in your account?

Having accepted that payment was due, then does anyone believe that minor discrepancies in wording or process (assuming such exist) would carry overriding weight at appeal?
So far we know the OP thought a payment was due, checked and found it wasn't. At that point they'd have no reason to go online and check again. Guesswork here but the OP took longer than 3 mins to return to car, load up and pass the exit camera.
I've almost done similar myself at a local out of town place, you pay at the machine before you return to your car and if it's far side of car park you can be in for a long walk plus more delays negotiating the exit at busy times, easy to imagine a scenario where they were in time at the machine but over time at the exit.
SamS
QUOTE (bomilo @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 14:38) *
Unless the sign has changed since April, the main point to walk away with is the free parking time.

20 minutes.

Not 10.

B


Perfect. Thank you for pointing that out as I hadn't noticed. Their email in response to my appeal said 10 minutes which proves that it's a money-making scam.
SamS
Following the information revealed in Bomilo's kind photo I have drafted the following response to PARKING WITH EASE. Does anyone have any comments on its tone or wording before I send it?

*******************************************

Thank you for your email and I note the sarcastic and insulting tone relating to my need to read the signage and the presumed source of my dispute text.

According to your own sign (photo attached), the free parking period is not 10 minutes as stated in your email but 20 minutes. As your own ANPR camera registered my vehicle leaving well within this time period, there can have been no parking charge due.

Clearly, your operation is either a money-making scam which attempts to scare unwitting motorists into paying an unjustified charge or you are simply ignorant of your own contractual terms posted in your car park.

I request that you cancel the charge notice immediately as any further unjustified demands for this payment may constitute harassment and be grounds for criminal proceedings against you.
**************************************************
cabbyman
I think you need confirmation that the sign hasn't changed before you send that.
hcandersen
The OP stated 10 minutes in their first post.

Were they wrong as well?

And throwing insults at another party in correspondence gets one where exactly?

Criminal proceedings etc. On what planet exactly?

Acting on the OP's post, which of course they're able to amend at any time, they tried to pay. There is not statement as to why. It is not unreasonable to infer that this occurred because a payment was due.

But clearly, if the free period is 20 minutes then their claim for a charge is baseless.

SamS
QUOTE (hcandersen @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 20:10) *
The OP stated 10 minutes in their first post.

Were they wrong as well?

And throwing insults at another party in correspondence gets one where exactly?

Criminal proceedings etc. On what planet exactly?

Acting on the OP's post, which of course they're able to amend at any time, they tried to pay. There is not statement as to why. It is not unreasonable to infer that this occurred because a payment was due.

But clearly, if the free period is 20 minutes then their claim for a charge is baseless.


Just to clarify a few points:
My original post did say 10 minutes as I was relying on an inadequate memory as well as the assertion made by the car park operator. Having seen the photo provided by Bimilo, i now recall that, when the payment machine refused to accept my offer to pay, it was well within the free parking period indicated by the signage. I also recall telling my partner, who was sitting in the car while I tried to pay, that there was 20 minutes free parking and I remember that we were nowhere near exceeding that time. I also left immediately which suggests that the idea that it took over 7 minutes until I was captured by the exit ANPR is ridiculous.

It would seem to me that, if evidence could be gathered that this operator was in the habit of sending PCNs to motorists who left within the free parking period but, like me, could not remember exactly how long the notice gave, they could be running a scam which would amount to attempting to obtain money by deception as defined in the Theft Act. Such evidence may be hard to accumulate but I think that members should be aware that it is possible. I also think that the operator should be made aware that this behaviour has been noted. Anyone else who falls foul of this kind of unwarranted demand should see it for what it is.

I will tone down my response but I am confident that the photo shows the same sign that I saw at the time.
Skiddaw
I think those of us who watch these threads will have to be mindful of this. We can then direct posters to the relevant authorities. Unfortunately most people don't question the honesty of PPC's.

Some of the experts on this forum go back a long while and know the history of some of the individuals behind these companies. Quite a few are no strangers to the darker side of the law.
dandyman
Google Streetview is from Sep 2014 and it's a different sign. Can't read it but it's deffo not the sign pictured above, so they've changed pretty recently. Unlikely to have changed again since April.
Skiddaw
Going past tomorrow so will update picture tomorrow evening.
SamS
QUOTE (hcandersen @ Mon, 3 Aug 2015 - 15:03) *
The OP does not dispute that they were on site for more than the permitted free period because according to them they tried to pay.

They had a further 48 hours in which to pay after leaving the site.

It does not seem logical to not pay within this period having already accepted that a payment was due.

OP, how would you deal with this central conflict in your account?

Having accepted that payment was due, then does anyone believe that minor discrepancies in wording or process (assuming such exist) would carry overriding weight at appeal?


There was no acceptance that payment was due - it was merely an attempt to pay before discovering that no payment was due because, according to the car park notice and the payment machine, I was within the free period.
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Invision Power Board © 2001-2017 Invision Power Services, Inc.