A possible can of worms has been opened as far as parking tickets are concerned, after a motorist successfully challenged a ticket he had been given in Richmond upon Thames. Nigel Wise contested the ticket that was issued to him by a mobile unit, and claimed that that device was not formally approved for use by the Dept. of Transport. His appeal was upheld and the council ordered to pay £50 costs to Mr. Wise.
Richmond Council estimates that its personal liability could be as high as £1.05m if it has to refund all 20,000 plus parking tickets that have been issued from 2009-2011. As these units are also used by a further 24 authorities across the country, the potential for refunds runs into many millions of pounds. The proposals to refund the money, which has been drawn up by the leader of Richmond, are being considered next month by the council.
The mobile units in questions are the CCTV units which use cameras that are fitted to periscopes on Smart cars. They have been a common sight on the streets of London for several years, and their use has gradually spread to the outlying provinces since the law changed in 2008.