Transport NI have claimed they acted correctly in the case of a misted-up ticket, reported in the Portadown Times last week.
Journalist Victor Gordon returned from Belfast to find a penalty charge notice (PCN) appended to his windscreen, even though he had purchased and displayed a ticket, which did not expire until the next morning.
But it rained while he was away, the window misted up and the flimsy ticket rolled in upon itself and the details were obscured – “caused by the poor quality of the ticket,” he claimed.
Transport NI said, “As can be seen in the photograph the pay and display voucher was not properly displayed.
“The traffic attendant was unable to determine if it was valid and subsequently was required to issue a PCN. Drivers do have a responsibility to ensure that a pay and display voucher can be clearly seen from outside the vehicle. The PCN was correctly issued.
“Drivers can make a genuine mistake, a parking voucher can become obscured or even fall from view. Anyone who has been issued with a PCN may make a challenge. All supporting evidence, such as a copy of the pay and display voucher that was valid at the time, will be considered.”
Our man insisted he made no mistakes – that he stuck the display voucher to the window, using the sticky paper provided. “It was clearly visible as I made for Portadown train station,” he insisted. “The vouchers are unfit for purpose.”
He added that the mistake was on the part of Transport NI – “I have heard several instances of them failing to adhere properly to windows when it rains and they mist up inside. The statement from Transport NI admits that they fall off.”
Victor has been using sticky blue tack to ensure that the vouchers remain stuck to the window, and is using his iPhone to picture the voucher – “with my own reflection in the window showing on the photos.”
“I have gone through the challenge process,” he pointed out. “I’m confident I’ll succeed, but it’s a cumbersome process and, in this case, totally unnecessary in my view.”