London, England (March 10, 2010) - 24 7 parking, experts in finding affordable long term parking in London, comment on the news that glitches occurring on certain council software may be driving up the parking fines of those with outstanding parking debts.
The case relates to a lady named Lisa Geary, who was charged £40 for parking in London at a cinema car park for too long. She appealed and consequently lost, deciding to cut her losses and pay the fine. However, a few weeks passed and she received a letter from Southwark council to inform her she hadn't paid and that her fine had increased to £80.
She registered her details on Southwark council's online parking hub, only to be informed that she had no outstanding debts. Her debt rose to £120 a further few weeks later - incensed, she logged her details again only to be told that she had no outstanding balance to pay.
A trip to Southwark's parking office showed that she did indeed have a large fine outstanding, yet upon further investigation, council officials discovered that the online payment system doesn't work if lower-case letters are used when entering a vehicle registration - Lisa Geary couldn't see her balance as she wasn't using capital letters. Southwark council admitted the mistake and reduced the £120 to the original £40, apologised and vowed to look at ways to amend the system.
"We're pleased that Southwark council rescinded the hefty fine and apologised to Lisa Geary, but there are valuable lessons for councils to learn from this when looking to collect parking fine payment through online means," said Peter Cooper of 24 7 Parking. "A perfect payment system still seems far away. If it isn't through online glitches like this then it's usually through payment being lost in the post or red tape. There is a possibility that this problem isn't restricted to Southwark and people in areas where the charges may be higher, when parking in London for example, need to be extra vigilant. 24 7 Parking can help customers to find London parking and avoid issues such as this."
To find out more about 24 7 Parking, please visit: http://www.247parking.com/ or call 0207 183 7247 for a quote.