Highview Parking have been making hay at Halton General Hospital, issuing thousands of tickets since their contract first started. It has been calculated this will make them an income of over £1,000,000 a year. Nothing more clearly illustrates why the Government issued guidelines to hospitals that car park contracts should not incentivise operators to issue tickets.
The Citizens Advice Bureau has called for 4,000 charges to be repaid, according to the BBC.
As an example of how hospital parking should work, Bristol Eye hospital run a very similar scheme managed by Total Parking Solutions. However there, the motorist cannot make a mistake, and TPS are not incentivised to issue parking charges because they get a management fee. An FoI request revealed that no charges for overstays were issued in a 3 month period.
So, on the one hand, a parking company scams motorists out of £1,000,000 a year. On the other, a fair operator using a sensible solution makes nothing from parking charges, and everybody (motorist, landowner and operator is happy).
The nature of Highview's suspension is not clear. The newspaper report states as follows:
The DVLA also confirmed in writing to Cllr Dave Thompson, Halton Lea ward, that it has launched an investigation over the matter.
The letter said it was suspending Highview’s access to the DVLA driver database ‘due to the serious nature of the complaint’.
A Warrington And Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation trust spokesman said: "Highview Parking have confirmed that they have received a DVLA request to temporarily hold any requests made for alleged parking infringements at Halton General.The Prankster is therefore not clear whether Highview have really been suspended, or just asked to stop requests for this car park.
The DVLA systems do not have the capability to filter out requests for particular car parks - the electronic system does not pass that information to the DVLA. Therefore if Highview have only been 'suspended' for this one car park, the suspension will have to be voluntary and will rely on Highview not submitting requests for that particular car park.
The Prankster will keep an eye on the situation.
The Parking Prankster