‘Very cross’ driver slapped with parking fine over broken meter

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Janice Bailey said she was handed a fine after claiming the parking ticket machine was out of order when driving in Plymouth. The tour guide has now issued a warning to other motorists urging them to be vigilant and never park without paying – even if they leave a friendly note.

Janice Bailey has been back and forth with Plymouth Council since receiving a penalty charge notice at the beginning of January.

She claims she should be let off because the machine at Derrys Cross was “covered” and “out of order”.

Despite leaving a note explaining she did not have any other form of payment other than coins, Janice, who lives in Dousland, still received the fine and her appeal has since been rejected.

As a result, Janice, who has “given up” taking the appeal any further, has been forced to cough up £25.

This was after the council extended the grace period to allow for her appeal to be investigated.

Janice, who drives a red Citroen, said: “I just feel very cross and inflamed.

“Apparently I should have scanned a barcode but I didn’t have my phone on me, and I don’t have internet on my phone anyway. 

“People older than myself in their 70s and 80s must not know what to do; I wouldn’t have a b****y clue even if I did have my phone,” she told Plymouth Live.

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Janice parked in the city centre on January 11 shortly after midday. She had change with her, but noticed that the meter was not working.

She did not have any other form of payment, so left a note to explain the situation.

Just 30 minutes later she received the penalty charge notice and on returning to her car was left scratching her head.

She subsequently lodged an appeal with the council but this was unsuccessful, and she has since been forced to pay and is now warning other motorists to never take the risk.

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She said: “The car parking department have told me that their cameras showed the meter was working. But if it was working, why was it covered?

“Please be careful motorists in Plymouth: if a meter isn’t working, park elsewhere.

“I should have taken a photograph on my iPad really, I wish I did. I’m not going to get my money back but I can warn other people.”

A Plymouth City Council spokesperson said they could not comment on an individual case, but did tell Plymouth Live: “If a parking machine is out of order people should use an alternative method of payment (for example phone call, text or the RingGo app or website), use another machine nearby (where available) or move to an alternative location with a working machine.

“As we announced in November, we will be soon be removing cash payments and upgrading all on-street machines to accept payments by phone, credit and debit cards and mobile apps. 

“This will offer more payment options for drivers while also removing the need for cash to be collected, stored and processed, reducing the city’s carbon footprint.

“If someone feels they have been issued with a penalty charge notice unfairly or in error they can submit an appeal. Details on how to do this are enclosed with the notice and can be found on our website.

“If an appeal is not upheld then the reasons for this are explained, along with further routes of appeal, should that person wish to challenge the findings.”

Express.co.uk has reached out to Plymouth City Council for further comment.

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