Drivers warned of popular TikTok parking hack – ‘out of pocket’
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On TikTok, the #parkinghack hashtag has received over 6.5 million views, with drivers trying to find ways to escape parking fines. However, experts are warning motorists to avoid any hacks which could involve deception as it may lead to major consequences for the driver.
A TikTok user, under the handle “thecarconnect_”, posted a short seven second clip of a parking “life hack”.
The user added that it had “saved me a lot of money” and that they would “never get a parking ticket again”.
The video shows pictures of a Toyota parked on double yellow lines with the bonnet up, implying that the vehicle is broken down and waiting for recovery.
Despite being posted less than a month ago, the clip has garnered more than 22,000 likes and almost 440 comments.
Harrison Woods, CEO at Your Parking Space, is urging drivers to ignore the “hack”, saying it could lead to harsher punishments than the cost of a parking ticket.
He said: “This viral hack might look seamless on video, and despite plenty of commenters feeling that if you’re willing to fight your corner you may be able to get out of a ticket.
“If you follow this hack you will still get a ticket and have to pay unless you can prove (with receipts) that your car was waiting for either repairs or vehicle collection.
“Cameras can also be used to provide evidence of the condition of your car, in addition to your claims needing to be in line with what the parking officer has said about your case.”
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As the cost of living crisis continues to ravage the country, many Britons have been looking for money-saving hacks and tips on TikTok and other social media.
Many videos will include ways to save on household bills by turning off certain appliances to combat rising energy prices.
Mr Woods added: “If you are caught, this failed parking tariff dodge could prove more expensive than a simple parking ticket as you can be taken to court under the Fraud act.”
This could likely see a motorist slapped with a hefty fine, likely hundreds of pounds.
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Earlier this year, the RAC slammed plans to increase parking fines to £120 – the equivalent of almost two days’ pay for a key worker on the minimum wage.
There have been disputes over whether to slash or increase the cost of a parking fine, citing the cost of living crisis, whilst also balancing the need for a strong deterrent.
Harrison Woods continued, saying: “In the worst-case scenario, you can be convicted for benefits fraud and receive an unlimited fine, seven years in prison or both.
“We strongly advise against copying this hack as it leaves your vehicle in a very vulnerable position.
“Leaving your car hood open when you are away from your vehicle will only lead to water damage or in other cases, harmful intrusion and temptation for thieves.
“That means you could be left seriously out of pocket if you’re your car is damaged and you have no evidence of how the damage occurred.
“Paying for parking may feel like an inconvenience at the time, but guaranteeing the safety of your car will cause you a lot less problems in the long run as opposed to following risky TikTok trends.”
Many of the comments under the original parking hack TikTok pointed out that this would be an open invitation to any opportunistic thieves.
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