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timetomakeastand

£150 to get car off lorry after fixed penalty parking ticket for causing an obstruction

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Hi

 

Desperately seeking legal advice - yesterday I parked near the tradesman entrance of The Hilton in Cardiff which I had done many times before. There are no yellow lines or signs but as the police officer that later arrived to control the situation advised, there doesnt have to be any signs if the car was causing an obstruction however it was not. The entrance was in full use evident by the number of Hilton staff using it to exit the building for a ciggy.

 

The Hilton apparently reported my car as an obstruction and a community copper placed the ticket on the car, details of which I also find strange as the times stated on the ticket were from 14:00 to 14:10, is this enough time?? Anyway by 3pm a lorry had turned up ready to tow which is where I arrive to move the vehicle, but Im not allowed. Bugger that I got in and stayed in - enter the REAL police, later followed by Cardiff's version of SWAT armed with Tazers and 9mm sidearms!!!

 

Anyway short of the story I had to pay £150 to get the car back off the lorry and yet to pay £30 fixed penalty. Im considering challenging in Magistrates, would I get the £150 back if successful or would it only be the £30 penalty.

 

I have numerous witnesses who have already stated they would be happy to give statements stating it was not an obstruction.

 

Can anyone offer any advice?? Should I challenge??

 

Help please!!!

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All I can say is there is no absolute definition of what is or is not an obstruction. In your view it may not have been, and in the view of onlookers it may not have been, but if the police saw it that way, then it's going to be very difficult to argue. They make the judgement, not the driver.

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There is no such offence as 'obstruction' it is either 'wilfull' or 'unnecessary' obstruction the most likely charge is the later as wilfull is harder to prove. Unless you can demonstate to the Court it was necessary to obstruct the highway you are onto a loser in my view.

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Let's not admit defeat before we've even started and wonder what fancy label the plods or other pedants might give it.

 

Going back to first principles.

 

1. Were you actually on the highway?

 

2. Were you causing ANY obstruction - irrespective of its fancy label?

 

1. What is the definition of the highway in any case? Is it any unmarked road even if just leading to a dead end or private property - or just a main or other public road.

 

2. I would think umpteen independent witnesses confirming your vehicle did not at any time impede the ingress or egress of any vehicle requiring to access or exit the Hilton's grounds should be strong evidence of no obstruction. It might be worth going back to the locus and measuring the width of the road, the width and length of your vehice and the amount of space you left for other vehicles to get past. If there was NO obstruction it doesn't matter what other label they want to hang on it as it NEVER happened. If there WAS an obstruction, and they claim it would have impeded emergency vehicles then then they made it last longer by their gung ho actions - thus exarcebating any "danger" or "threat to safety" - so enforcing a fixed penalty was actually more important than eliminating the "danger" at the first opportiunity! You would have left the scene PDQ if they had just let you do so!

 

Whatever others (for some reason?) may try to imply, the police are not judge and jury - and certainly not infallible. It's certainly worth a try. I have had things dropped when they realised the "fixed penalty" route was not going to work. The courts are probably too busy to pursue this and it may well be marked "no proceeedings". That is what I found in a similar situation when I refused to pay the fixed penalty charge and opted for court.

 

On the other hand if they take you all the way it could cost you more - but that's British justice!

 

Good luck!

 

BD

Edited by Bigdebtor

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Were you causing ANY obstruction - irrespective of its fancy label?

 

Yes. Of course. How can a vehicle not cause an obstruction? Just by being there it is blocking the route which could be taken were it not there. That's what is meant by obstructing the highway - occupying space thereon - that's what the term means - pedantically. It's not a fancy term.

 

That being so, the rest of your post rather pales into insignificance. It becomes a value judgement whether a problem was being posed. If the police judge it was, that's valid grounds to remove the vehcile whether umpteen witnesses agree or not.

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So the police are judge and jury? I didn't mean obstruction was aafancy label - it was the two alternative adjectives - wilful or unneccessary.

 

However I thought it was just the case that rolling over when they tell you to do so - i.e. by just paying any fixed penalty - was accepting that premise - but if you challenge it then it means a court with a judge will hear the evidence from both sides - and independent witnesses could then be useful - even presuasive?

 

Am I wrong in thinking we still had such a right to trial by our peers - albeit a helluva risk to take at times?

 

BD


£50k saved and £7k charges refunded:

MBNA & A&L 35% F&F direct - saved £23k. Birmingham Midshires £1700 charges refunded

Abbey Loan/BCW 50% - saved £2k. Barclaycard/CSL 40% - saved £6k

Monument/DCA 35% - saved £1k. LTSB/Wescot 50% - saved £4k

HBOS Visa £5k charges refund via Blair Oliver Scott

RBS Direct Line/(genuine) solicitors June 2010 40% - saved £3k

Morgan Stanley/Aktiv Kapital £11k SB Nov 2010

Over £40k balance write off and charges refunds to fight for:

HBOS O/d Charges £5k. Egg Loan/Aktiv Kapital CCA Dispute £8k

Egg Card/Fredrickson taking £5 monthly but CCA & Charges Dispute £4k

Goldfish/1st Credit DN/TN Dispute £9k. Capital One/CSL charges claim £4k

Barclaycard/CSL taking £5 monthly on £10k debt

 

I hope I have helped - if I have please hit my star - and recognise the others who have helped too.

Bigdebtor

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Am I wrong in thinking we still had such a right to trial by our peers - albeit a helluva risk to take at times?

 

Under The Criminal Justice Act 2003 a judge has the power to order a no-jury trial.

 

What about trial in a magistrates' court - are they your peers?


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

Nothing in this post constitutes "advice" which I may not, in any event, be qualified to provide.

The only interpretation permitted on this post (or any others I may have made) is that this is what I would personally consider doing in the circumstances discussed. Each and every reader of this post or any other I may have made must take responsibility for forming their own view and making their own decision.

I receive an unwieldy number of private messages. I am happy to respond to messages posted on open forum but am unable to respond to private messages, seeking advice, when the substance of that message should properly be on the open forum.

Many thanks for your assistance and understanding on this.

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A judge, magistrate, sheriff, recorder etc. is deemed to be your peer - no need to have a jury to be tried by your "peers".


£50k saved and £7k charges refunded:

MBNA & A&L 35% F&F direct - saved £23k. Birmingham Midshires £1700 charges refunded

Abbey Loan/BCW 50% - saved £2k. Barclaycard/CSL 40% - saved £6k

Monument/DCA 35% - saved £1k. LTSB/Wescot 50% - saved £4k

HBOS Visa £5k charges refund via Blair Oliver Scott

RBS Direct Line/(genuine) solicitors June 2010 40% - saved £3k

Morgan Stanley/Aktiv Kapital £11k SB Nov 2010

Over £40k balance write off and charges refunds to fight for:

HBOS O/d Charges £5k. Egg Loan/Aktiv Kapital CCA Dispute £8k

Egg Card/Fredrickson taking £5 monthly but CCA & Charges Dispute £4k

Goldfish/1st Credit DN/TN Dispute £9k. Capital One/CSL charges claim £4k

Barclaycard/CSL taking £5 monthly on £10k debt

 

I hope I have helped - if I have please hit my star - and recognise the others who have helped too.

Bigdebtor

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A judge, magistrate, sheriff, recorder etc. is deemed to be your peer - no need to have a jury to be tried by your "peers".

 

If that is the case, why isn't a police constable?


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

Nothing in this post constitutes "advice" which I may not, in any event, be qualified to provide.

The only interpretation permitted on this post (or any others I may have made) is that this is what I would personally consider doing in the circumstances discussed. Each and every reader of this post or any other I may have made must take responsibility for forming their own view and making their own decision.

I receive an unwieldy number of private messages. I am happy to respond to messages posted on open forum but am unable to respond to private messages, seeking advice, when the substance of that message should properly be on the open forum.

Many thanks for your assistance and understanding on this.

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If he were appointed as a magistrate or Justice of the Peace then he would be when serving on the bench - not when walking the beat or driving the panda car - and any judge is also only so empowered in the appropriate circumstances. However I have a feeling a serving Police Officer cannot act in such a capacity - although a few bad apples already think they are judge, jury and executioner.


£50k saved and £7k charges refunded:

MBNA & A&L 35% F&F direct - saved £23k. Birmingham Midshires £1700 charges refunded

Abbey Loan/BCW 50% - saved £2k. Barclaycard/CSL 40% - saved £6k

Monument/DCA 35% - saved £1k. LTSB/Wescot 50% - saved £4k

HBOS Visa £5k charges refund via Blair Oliver Scott

RBS Direct Line/(genuine) solicitors June 2010 40% - saved £3k

Morgan Stanley/Aktiv Kapital £11k SB Nov 2010

Over £40k balance write off and charges refunds to fight for:

HBOS O/d Charges £5k. Egg Loan/Aktiv Kapital CCA Dispute £8k

Egg Card/Fredrickson taking £5 monthly but CCA & Charges Dispute £4k

Goldfish/1st Credit DN/TN Dispute £9k. Capital One/CSL charges claim £4k

Barclaycard/CSL taking £5 monthly on £10k debt

 

I hope I have helped - if I have please hit my star - and recognise the others who have helped too.

Bigdebtor

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OK, thanks for that. I think I'm now clear on where you are coming from.


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

Nothing in this post constitutes "advice" which I may not, in any event, be qualified to provide.

The only interpretation permitted on this post (or any others I may have made) is that this is what I would personally consider doing in the circumstances discussed. Each and every reader of this post or any other I may have made must take responsibility for forming their own view and making their own decision.

I receive an unwieldy number of private messages. I am happy to respond to messages posted on open forum but am unable to respond to private messages, seeking advice, when the substance of that message should properly be on the open forum.

Many thanks for your assistance and understanding on this.

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