Tough approach to illegal parking is ‘success story’
Clamps have been used on nuisance lorry drivers in recent weeks as part of Ashford Bor- ough Council’s tough approach to illegal parking.
Since the lorry clamping pilot launched in April this year, several drivers have been clamped and forced to pay outstanding fines before being released.
In addition, officers at Tues- day’s Joint Transportation Board meeting said that the overall impact of the scheme has been a success so far, with the number of vehicles parking on the Sevington, Orbital Park and Henwood estates significantly dropping over the past five months.
Before the trial started, more than 100 HGVs were counted across the three estates, however this has now been reduced to five by last month.
Jo Fox, Ashford council’s health, parking and community safety manager, said that lorry hotspots were still being checked each night between midnight and 2am and that overall the impact has been positive, and called Henwood a “success story”.
In addition, she said the council is now collecting 27% of fines from drivers before they are
Cllr Bernard Heyes passed to collection agencies. This is compared to the 17% they were collecting after they had gone to collecting agencies pre-pilot.
Of the scheme, JTB member Cllr Bernard Heyes (Con. Godin- ton) said: “We have been patient until now. But anyone who gets clamped now, deserves it.”
Ms Fox acknowledged there were some issues with displacement, including in Hothfield, where noise from the trucks disturbs residents, and on the Cobbs Wood Estate.
She added: “One area that was always a problem is the Ellingham Industrial Estate, and we will keep an eye on it.”
A report of the scheme added however: “It has been established that the number of HGVs regularly reported as being parked overnight, in some areas, differ vastly from our observations.”
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