Sunday, 7 December 2014

Motorist injured on Snowdon wins overstay battle in court

Judgment has now been handed down in the Snowdon case referred to earlier.

To summarise, the motorist fell and injured themselves, resulting in an overstay in the car park which the motorist did not realise at the time.

On receiving a charge for £100 from ParkingEye the motorist tried to make good the situation by paying the £2 extra parking charge, plus an administrative amount, to Snowdon Mountain Railway. This was refused.

The motorist appealed to ParkingEye, which was refused, and to POPLA who ruled they could not take mitigating circumstances into account.

ParkingEye then started court proceedings, where a robust defence was prepared with help.

The case was originally heard in August, but the judge decided he needed more than the 2 hours allotted for the case to decide the issues.

It was rescheduled and was then heard in November by a different judge. The Daily Post reported on the hearing here. DDJ Mahy reserved judgment while she considered the issues and has now made her ruling available.

DDJ Mahy ruled that the test case of ParkingEye v Beavis and Wardley did not apply. That case was for a free car park and ParkingEye needed to charge a large amount for transgressions to make it economic to manage an otherwise free car park. In this case, the car park was a pay and display car park generating substantial revenue. Therefore there was no need to charge a large amount for transgressions. This meant that charging £100 for an overstay worth £2 was not commercially justifiable and as the amount far exceeded the costs, the amount was therefore a penalty.

The claim was dismissed and the defendant's full costs of £165 were awarded. ParkingEye will need to pay within 14 days or risk getting a CCJ which could mean their access to keeper data from the DVLA is barred.

Prankster Note

Although the motorist won in court they had to appeal to ParkingEye, appeal to POPLA, and go through two court hearings before their case was resolved. Motorists undertaking activities on Snowdon which may result in injury to themselves or their passengers should therefore take note and consider whether to take their business to a more tourist-friendly location.

Snowdon Mountain Railway absolved themselves of the problem, even though the motorist tried to make good the £2 shortfall together with an amount to cover costs.

The car park is owned by Heritage Attractions Limited

The Prankster congratulates the motorist for his perseverance, and thanks all the people behind the scenes (you know who you are).

No comments:

Post a Comment