‘Rogue’ private parking firms targeted as MPs back fairer parking campaign

The RAC has welcomed the support of the House of Commons for a fairer private parking system, which would make it easier to appeal unfair penalties.

The Parking (Code of Practice) Bill would see the creation of a single, independent appeals service for drivers who have been hit by hefty private parking charges.

The Bill would also introduce a new code of practice for private car parks, including a £100 limit for penalties and a 10-minute grace period for drivers overstaying the limits on their ticket.

RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes says the organisation is “delighted” that the Bill is progressing through Parliament, and that its members would soon benefit from a fairer parking system.

He said: “For a long time, we campaigned for a fairer system that was based upon a national code of practice and a single independent appeals process, which the Bill looks likely to deliver.

“We listened to drivers, and we put their concerns forward alongside a solution to MPs and Government.”

“Once in law, it will make parking on private land fairer for motorists and will hopefully spell the end of rogue operators who have made the sector widely untrusted amongst the driving public.”

The Bill, introduced by Conservative MP Sir Greg Knight, represents a commitment to the party’s 2017 manifesto promise to tackle rogue private parking companies.

It comes as an increasing number of motorists are being targeted by these firms, rocketing from 687,000 a decade ago to an expected 6.4 million in 2018/2019.

According to a recent study the DVLA is set to make £16 million this year alone from private parking firms requesting driver details, with each request costing £2.50.

Local government minister, Rishi Sunak MP, was also pleased that MPs had unanimously backed the proposals to create a better private parking system for the UK’s motorists.

He said: “Millions of drivers use private car parks every day, and far too many of them are receiving unjust fines at the hands of rogue firms.”

“We need a fairer, clearer and more consistent system that puts the brake on the unfair practices being experienced by too many drivers.”

The Bill, which now heads to the House of Lords, would introduce the same system across England, Scotland and Wales if passed in the upper house.

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