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VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« on: 16 January, 2020, 10:00:45 AM »
Driver fined £100 after waiting '35 seconds' for car park barrier to rise at East Midlands Airport

'It is nothing less than a scam'

ByJack LongstaffChristopher HarperMatthew Lodge
11:51, 9 JAN 2020


Nigel says he was unfairly fined on his visit to the airport

A driver has been left furious after he was fined at East Midlands Airport while waiting for the car park barrier to let him in.

Nigel Wright was fined £100 for stopping in a 'no stopping zone' while he waited to get into the short stay car park at the airport - in what is the latest in a series of complaints about parking fines there.

The 34-year-old says he was forced to wait for half a minute while getting to the token machine and waiting to be let inside when going to pick his parents up after their holiday, Derbyshire Live reports.

The English teacher says he was left confused after receiving a fine by Vehicle Control Services (VCS), which enforces parking at the site, as he made sure he paid for his visit.

The company claimed he had been fined for 'stopping in a zone where stopping is prohibited'.

VCS provided photographs which show Nigel's Peugeot at a halt at the car park entrance as he waited for the barrier to open.

Nigel accused VCS of trying to "scam" him out of £100 and he has now appealed the fine with the company.

He claims they didn't answer his pleas - but the airport said the firm would cancel the fine when approached for comment.


The pictures VCS used to justify fining him

Nigel said: “I pulled up to the barrier and waited for it to open but soon realised it was not automatic.

“I wound my window down to reach for a token but the car was too far away.

“So I reversed the car back slightly and pulled up closer so I could reach the button to get the plastic coin.

“I entered the car park within about 35 seconds of first arriving at the barrier. It is nothing less than a scam. I could not believe it when I read the letter.”

Nigel visited  East Midlands Airport on December 17 to pick up his elderly parents following their holiday to Spain.

They were ready and waiting when he arrived at around 1.30pm and he spent just 11 minutes in the car park before paying the £4 parking charge.



But 13 days later, Nigel received the PCN through the post ordering him to stump up £100 - or face legal action.

Parking enforcement company VCS offered Nigel a £40 discount on the fine if he paid promptly, but he said he refused to just accept the fine.

Nigel, who is from Swadlincote, Derbyshire, believes he was not in the wrong and lodged an official appeal with VCS.

He said: “It is quite confusing for drivers because there are no stopping signs everywhere.

“I was really careful so I was shocked when I received the fine, and surprised that I did anything wrong.

“I made sure I did not stop where I wasn’t supposed to. There seems to be a ridiculous level of enforcement there.

“I looked at the photos on the letter and saw they were fining me for being at the barrier. I just couldn’t believe it.”

Nigel lodged a complaint with VCS on January 2 and said he didn't get a reply.

Nigel Wright has been left furious

An East Midlands Airport spokesperson said: “It is clear that Mr Wright was attempting to enter the car park and should not have been penalised.

“Following his appeal, Vehicle Control Services (VCS), which enforces parking on red-routed airport estate roads, have cancelled the fine.

“We apologise for the inconvenience that this has caused him.

“The safety of people visiting East Midlands Airport (EMA) is of paramount importance and controlling the traffic flow across the airport site is key to this.

“For this reason, airport estate roads are red-routed and “no stopping” signage is clearly visible to discourage drivers from waiting in undesignated parking areas when dropping off and collecting passengers.

“All drivers have a choice of drop-off and pick-up parking at the airport. Ten minutes parking in rapid drop off costs £3, while 30 minutes in short stay 1 car park is £4.

“During the busier summer months (April to October), one hour’s free parking can be had in Long Stay 2.”

VCS have been contacted for a statement.

East Midlands Airport has introduced fines for motorists seen picking up air passengers at the petrol station, as drivers have used the forecourt to avoid having to pay for the short stay car park.

Leanne James revealed earlier this week that she said she was fined for parking at the station for just 30 seconds to pick up her partner.

Alan Chapman, 64, from Boston, who works at the airport, revealed on January 6 that he was hit with a £100 fine when he parked on the garage forecourt for a few seconds to retrieve his work car park pass from the boot of his car.

Terri Akers, 51, was left shocked when she also received a fine after being caught on CCTV camera dropping a friend off while putting petrol in her car last month.

Jacqui Barrett from Solihull was also caught out when she pulled into the garage to ask an employee for directions to the car park she and her partner had paid for.

https://www.lincolnshirelive.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/east-midlands-airport-parking-fine-3718621

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Re: VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« Reply #1 on: 16 January, 2020, 10:58:25 AM »
Outraged mum left fuming at East Midlands Airport petrol station parking fines

She's hoping to start a campaign

ByNigel SlaterMatty Hewitt
05:00, 4 JAN 2020


Angry mum Terri Akers wants to start a local campaign to stop fines being issued at the petrol station next to East Midlands airport

A mum left outraged after receiving a parking charge notice at the petrol station next to East Midlands Airport has vowed to start a campaign to stop people being issued fines.

Terri Akers, 51, was left shocked when she received a PCN after being caught on CCTV camera dropping a friend off while putting petrol in her car last month.

Signs have been put on display in and around the petrol station to warn motorists they could be fined if they are seen using the petrol station as a dropping off or picking up point for airport passengers.

The mother-of-one, who lives in Nottingham, spoke to Derbyshire Live after seeing a number of people came forward claiming they had been treated unfairly by the new parking rules.

However, Mrs Akers wrote a two-page letter to Vehicle Control Services Limited appealing the £100 fine as she claimed she did not see the signs and therefore they were "not effective".

The 51-year-old, who works as a technical writer, also blasted the fine as "illegitimate" and "poorly conceived as it has no basis in law or common sense".

She said: "As I approached the airport, I needed to get petrol, but was fully intending to go to the £3 parking bay.

"My friend then noticed the garage and suggested that I fill the car up there. It seemed like a sensible thing to do, then my friend realised he could quickly jump out while I was filling up.

"My sole intention was not to defraud the authorities out of their £3 parking charge. What sane person would insist that their friend stay rooted to their seat waiting for the fuel to be paid when the airport is just a short walk away?"


Airport users who use the petrol station at EMA are currently fined if they're caught dropping people off

Vehicle Control Services told our sister paper Derbyshire Live that Miss Akers had won her appeal, but did not state why.

A representative for Vehicle Control Services Limited said: "In light of Mrs Akers' appeal and the evidence supplied we have accepted her appeal; we will formally confirm our decision to Mrs Akers."

Since winning her appeal, Mrs Akers now wants to help others who have fallen victim to what she described as an "outrageous scam".

"I want to start a campaign against this," she said.

"I think it is wrong and completely unjustifiable.

"I clearly just got lucky with my appeal. To be honest I don't know why my appeal was successful - maybe because it was Christmas or the way I worded the letter.

"But my point is, there are still plenty of people out there who are likely to fall into the trap in future and may accept it and pay the fine. There are many people who will drive to the East Midlands Airport who will be unaware of the situation.

"It needs looking at closely. I would like to get in contact with all those who have received fines and see what can be done. This is just not on.

"To be honest with you, I think they should get rid of the petrol station and replace it with a car park."

Derbyshire Live contacted vehicle Control Services Limited for a comment about Mrs Akers' plan to start a campaign, but they did not comment.

East Midlands Airport says picking up or dropping off people at The Fuel Station is strongly prohibited and several signs have been up since June.

A spokesman said: “All drivers dropping off and collecting passengers at EMA should use the designated car parks and drop-off facilities.

"One hour’s free parking can be had in Long Stay 2, which is ideal for drivers who have to wait longer for their passengers, ten minutes parking in rapid drop off costs £3, while 30 minutes in short stay 1 car park is £4.”

The Prax Group, which owns the petrol station, said new rules were introduced as the behaviour of some motorists was having a "negative impact on the business".

It also stated that motorists either picking up or dropping off airport passengers at the petrol station was causing a "serious health and safety concern".

If you believe you've been caught foul of this, please get in touch with us at news@lincolnshireecho.co.uk.

https://www.lincolnshirelive.co.uk/news/local-news/outraged-mum-left-fuming-east-3700187

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Re: VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« Reply #2 on: 16 January, 2020, 11:17:33 AM »
'It's a money-making scam' - Lincolnshire woman furious after East Midlands Airport garage fine

There have been an outpouring of complaints

ByMatty Hewitt
16:56, 7 JAN 2020UPDATED11:09, 8 JAN 2020


Airport users who use the petrol station at EMA are currently fined if they're caught dropping people off

A motorist has been left incensed after she received a £100 fine after picking her husband up from the petrol station at East Midlands Airport.

Leanne James had driven over to the airport from Grantham to pick her partner up who had been abroad on a stag do.

She had waited for an hour in the free car park after his flight was repeatedly delayed, before heading to meet him at the garage where she picked him up.

Leanne claims to have been just 30 seconds in the garage as her partner got into the car, but she ended up being slapped with a fine.

East Midlands Airport has introduced fines for motorists seen picking up air passengers at the petrol station, as drivers have used the forecourt to avoid having to pay for the short stay car park.

Leanne said: "It's a money making scam.

"My partner's flight had been repeatedly delayed and I was running out of time in the free car park.

"It was around midnight and there was nobody about.

"It's fine if you're not allowed to park there but I didn't see any signs to say that I couldn't pull in.

"There needs to be better signage or somewhere where you can pick someone up. I know that you can pay £3 to wait for 15 minutes but that is too expensive.

"The fine was £100 but if I paid earlier then it was £60 - for 30 seconds I think that is ridiculous.

"I contacted BP and was told that it wasn't their problem it was the airports."

An email sent to Leanne by BP, which runs the garage, states: "Due to the nature of the issue I would like to kindly ask you to please address all your concerns to the Parking Enforcement Company you have received the mentioned letter from as they are equipped with all necessary tools to best investigate your case.

"If you believe the PCN has been issued incorrectly you can make your appeal to POPLA (Parking On Private Land Appeals) mentioned on the letter you have received.

"POPLA is an independent company who will assess your complaint, if the overstay is due to a genuine reason then POPLA will review your claim."

Leanne is the latest in a series of people who have accused the airport and enforcement company Vehicle Control Services of 'scamming' customers with the rule.

Lincolnshire Live reported Alan Chapman, an aircraft engineer at East Midlands Airport who was hit with a £100 ticket after he briefly pulled over at the petrol station in the early hours to check he had his pass for the staff car park.


Alan Chapman enjoyed his holiday but a parking fine was in the post

In Mr Chapman's case, Vehicle Control Services told him his appeal was turned down because: "The signs at the entrance to the East Midlands International Airport and the access roads within, clearly state 'No Stopping', giving clear notice that the land is private property and that a charge of £100 will be levied if vehicles do stop.

"The above detailed vehicle stopped in a zone where stopping is prohibited and the driver became liable to pay that charge.

"In your appeal you have confirmed to us that on the date in question, you stopped your vehicle in the fuel station.

"A review of our CCTV evidence has confirmed that on the date in question, your vehicle stopped for an unreasonable amount of time in the fuel station where restrictions apply.

"There are more than 70 high profile signs advising drivers not to stop and warning that if a driver does stop, a charge of £100 is payable.

"The signs exceed recognised industry standards, with some as large as 2m by 1.1m (6ft 6in by 3ft 7in) which clearly state 'no stopping' alongside the nationally recognised Highway Code symbol for a Clearway (No Stopping).

"Furthermore, the signage on the approach road is reflective and positioned to face oncoming vehicles and the text size used is relative to the average approach speed of a vehicle in relation to the speed limit in force at that location.

"We have fully reviewed this case and we are satisfied that the charge notice was correctly issued.

"We are unable to accept the mitigating circumstances raised in your representations, your appeal is therefore rejected and the charge will stand."

Jacqui Barrett from Solihull was also caught out after her son had surprised her and her partner with a trip to Milan.

The couple had never flown from East Midlands before and pulled into the garage to ask an employee for directions to the car park they'd paid for.

Jacqui said: "I couldn't see any signs for the car park which we needed to leave our car in so pulled into the garage to ask for help.

"I'll admit we weren't getting petrol, but to be slapped for a fine for asking a question is applling.

"I won't fly from there again. I'm disgusted.

"We had already paid to leave our car in the airport so to be fined by the same company it's disgusting.

"I originally paid my fine but will be appealing it after panicking so close to Christmas I didn't want to have it hanging over my head.

"I was so shocked when I received it."

Vehicle Control Services has been contacted for a comment.

https://www.lincolnshirelive.co.uk/news/local-news/east-midlands-airport-garage-fines-3711305

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Re: VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« Reply #3 on: 16 January, 2020, 11:26:20 AM »
East Midlands Airport worker hit with £100 ticket for pulling over at petrol station to search for staff parking pass!

He pulled up for a matter of seconds to check he had his car park pass

ByPaul Whitelam
05:00, 7 JAN 2020



An aircraft engineer at East Midlands Airport was hit with a £100 ticket after he briefly pulled over at a nearby petrol station in the early hours to check he had his pass for the staff car park.

Alan Chapman, 64, from Boston and his wife Karen were about to jet off on a holiday to Cyprus when their car was snared by a parking control CCTV van at about 3.40am.

Mr Chapman was caught as he was parked on the garage forecourt for a few seconds to retrieve his work car park pass from the boot of his car.

But after returning home from his getaway to the sun-kissed Mediterranean island, Mr Chapman received a letter from Vehicle Control Services Ltd demanding £100, reduced to £60 if paid within four weeks.


Alan Chapman was fined for stopping very briefly at an airport petrol station

Mr Chapman, of Allington Garden, lost his appeal against the charge and ended up paying £60 because his car was "stopped for an unreasonable amount of time" at the fuel station where restrictions apply.

He now wishes he had simply ignored the parking charge notice - an invoice for breach of contract issued by a private company - rather than a penalty charge notice usually issued by local authorities.

Mr Chapman said: "I got caught at the same petrol station as many other people have and I work at the airport.

"We were going on holiday and the plan was to leave the car in my work car park.

"As I got to the roundabout at the entrance to the airport I suddenly thought that if I didn't have my pass I wouldn't get into the car park.

"I knew about the CCTV vans and the parking issues and I just panicked.

"So I pulled into the forecourt where there's no red lines, got out of the car, got my pass out of the boot, got back in the car and drove off."


They had a break in Cyprus

Mr Chapman, who was caught out on July 17, last year, added: "CCTV vans were sat on the petrol station forecourt. I was only there for a few seconds.

"There are no red lines at the petrol station but the parking company told me there are warning signs on the outside of the forecourt.

"How are people supposed to see the signs in the dark? I think they're being unfair.

"I can understand them wanting to stop people being dropped off at the petrol station to catch flights but that's not what I was doing.

"I appealed the £100 fine but my excuse wasn't accepted and I had to pay the reduced fine.

"I wish I'd checked my bag for my pass at the car park barrier."

Mr Chapman raises his concerns as Terri Akers vowed to campaign to stop people being issued with the charges.

The 51-year-old from Nottingham was left shocked when she received a ticket after being caught on CCTV camera dropping a friend off while putting petrol in her car last month.

She said that signs in and around the fuel station warning people they could be charged for dropping or picking up passengers at the fuel station were "not effective".

In Mr Chapman's case, Vehicle Control Services Ltd told him his appeal was turned down because: "The signs at the entrance to the East Midlands International Airport and the access roads within, clearly state 'No Stopping', giving clear notice that the land is private property and that a charge of £100 will be levied if vehicles do stop.

"The above detailed vehicle stopped in a zone where stopping is prohibited and the driver became liable to pay that charge.

"In your appeal you have confirmed to us that on the date in question, you stopped your vehicle in the fuel station.

"A review of our CCTV evidence has confirmed that on the date in question, your vehicle stopped for an unreasonable amount of time in the fuel station where restrictions apply.

"There are more than 70 high profile signs advising drivers not to stop and warning that if a driver does stop, a charge of £100 is payable.

"The signs exceed recognised industry standards, with some as large as 2m by 1.1m (6ft 6in by 3ft 7in) which clearly state 'no stopping' alongside the nationally recognised Highway Code symbol for a Clearway (No Stopping).

"Furthermore, the signage on the approach road is reflective and positioned to face oncoming vehicles and the text size used is relative to the average approach speed of a vehicle in relation to the speed limit in force at that location.

"We have fully reviewed this case and we are satisfied that the charge notice was correctly issued.

"We are unable to accept the mitigating circumstances raised in your representations, your appeal is therefore rejected and the charge will stand."

We have invited Vehicle Control Services to comment.

The RAC advises motorists to check for signs and terms and conditions when parking, which could help when appealing against a parking charge notice.

It is also important to park correctly within the lines. There is no automatic 10-minute period of grace at the end of the parking period, as you would expect from local authority parking.

But if private operators are members of the British Parking Association, there should be 10 minutes' grace if the area is one where parking is actually permitted.

https://www.lincolnshirelive.co.uk/news/local-news/east-midlands-airport-worker-hit-3709478

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Re: VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« Reply #4 on: 12 March, 2020, 03:53:42 PM »
Midland worker gets £185 parking fine after stopping for 41 seconds

East Midlands Airport worker Jessica Blower believes parking enforcement at the Castle Donington site has got out of control

ByMatt JarramGraeme Brown
09:30, 2 MAR 2020




An East Midlands Airport has been landed with a huge fine - for stopping to adjust her mirror.

Jessica Blower is now facing a £185 fine for stopping for 41 seconds - but she plans to fight it.

Despite appealing the decision by showing the enforcement company her identification card, car parking pass and even her pay slips they have refused to drop the £60 charge.

Mrs Blower said they have now upped the fine to £185 and threatened county court action if she does not pay it immediately.

She believes parking enforcement at the Castle Donington site has got out of control as employees are now fearful of fines.

And it comes as a warning to those who head to the airport from Coventry and Warwickshire for their holidays.

This comes after a rise in the number of holidaymakers being slapped with penalties for dropping off or picking up passengers at a nearby petrol station while filling up their cars.

But Mrs Blower and her partner Carl Bird, 49, are standing firm and believe the fine is unjust, especially as she works at the airport and was only making sure her car was roadworthy.

She told  Nottinghamshire Live : "The only reason I stopped was because of my wing mirror. Sometimes we can't get out of our car park because of taxis so I can understand why the airport are doing it but they are fining the wrong people.

"People at work don't bother going to the petrol station anymore because they know if they stop it will result in a ticket. We are not going to pay it and if they want to take us to court I am happy to go to court. I am not paying for something like this.

"The whole system needs to be looked at. They have no interaction with these people. They just pull up, take a photo, and then fine them."

Mrs Blower was handed a ticket on September 7 at 12.41am just after finishing her shift. She left an airport car park and was driving through the site when she realised her wing mirror needed adjusting.

She pulled over for 41 seconds but was fined for "stopping in a zone where stopping is prohibited".

She said: "I pulled over in the lay-by to simply get out of my vehicle, go round to the passenger side, adjust the wing mirror, and return to my car to travel home."

Vehicle Control Services, which handed out the fine, was contacted by Nottinghamshire Live, but no one responded.

A spokesman for East Midlands Airport said: "The safety of people working on the airport site is of paramount importance and controlling the traffic flow on estate roads is key to this.

"All roads across the airport estate are patrolled regularly and signage is clearly visible reminding people not to stop on red-routed roads.

"The airport site is busy 24 hours-a-day and roads need to kept clear at all times for passengers arriving by car and to allow heavy goods vehicles access to the overnight cargo operators."

https://www.coventrytelegraph.net/news/local-news/midland-worker-gets-185-parking-17844045
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Offline 2b1ask1

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Re: VCS Ltd abuses at East Midlands airport
« Reply #5 on: 13 March, 2020, 10:21:51 AM »
So their video/photos of this heinous use of a lay-by will clearly document the mass of transportation that was inconvenienced by her selfishly not blocking a road!

Seriously airports are now a complete joke as far as parking or even being in a vehicle withing the lands, with ever more honey-trap road systems you cannot escape from except through paid parking like Newcastle!
Willing to do my bit...

 


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