Thousands of parking fines issued
Calls for vehicles that are parked illegal on Leeside to be towed away have been shot down by City Hall.
It comes as new figures show that 1,577 fines have been issued by Cork City Council from 1 January to 31 October for parking a vehicle illegally on double yellow lines, 2,215 for parking a vehicle on a roadway where a no parking sign applies and 3,185 for unlawfully parking in a loading bay.
288 fines have been issued for parking a vehicle in a disabled persons parking bay without displaying a valid disabled persons parking permit and 110 for parking in a manner in which it will interfere with the normal flow of traffic or which obstructs or endangers other traffic.
Meanwhile 852 fines have been issue for parking a vehicle in a street subject to a prohibition on parking, 1,175 for parking wholly or partly on a footway, grass margin or median strip. These are just some of the 35,056 fines that have been issued up until the end of October.
The figures were revealed to Green Party Cllr Lorna Bogue at a Cork City Council meeting on Monday. At the same meeting, her party colleague Dan Boyle asked that towing be introduced for vehicles that are parked illegally across Cork city.
A council official said: “Cork City Council previously operated a tow away regime but terminated this operation in 2011. This regime was terminated as it was not a cost effective arrangement to manage the on street parking facilities in the city and more importantly, it created a negative perception of the city and the city’s strategy of encouraging people to shop, socialise and work in the city with the consequential impact on traders and businesses.
“Having regard to the current operations and the impact of alternative arrangements on the city, it is not recommended that towing of vehicles be implemented as a city wide enforcement tool.”
While Cllr Boyle said that it was clear that council management has no intention of adopting a towing regime, he said something had to be done to stop parking from parking illegally especially on footpaths and kerbs.
“Footpaths are not damaged by pedestrians. Footpaths are damaged by cars driving and parking on them. Most people who drive, drive responsibly and most people who cycle, cycle responsible and some pedestrians jaywalk. However the damage that it being done proportionately by cars is not being matched by our parking enforcements. Too many bus and cycle lanes are being parked on and we need to have a strong proactive policy because the policy we have now is not working.”
Cllr Paudie Dineen (Ind) said he was “totally against” towing, adding that it would have a detrimental effect on the city. “If people have a fear of being towed, they won’t come into the city,” he said.
Fine Gael’s Shane O’Callaghan said he was broadly in favour in towing cars that were parked in cycle lanes or causing an obstruction but he hoped that it wouldn’t lead to clamping in the city again.
His party mate Derry Canty agreed that something had to be done to tackle the amount of illegal parking but disagreed with towing away cars.
“Educate people how to park properly,” he urged.