2,442 of these were WRONG

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A STAGGERING 2,442 illegal parking fines were overturned in just two years after successful appeals from motorists claiming they were wrongly targeted by traffic wardens.

Hartlepool Borough Council overturned 2,442 £70 fines in the last two years – almost one in five of the 13,981 tickets issued.

Council chiefs say there are a range of reasons for tickets being reversed such as people not displaying disabled badges properly, tickets falling from the windscreen or drivers forgetting to display their parking permit.

It comes as the council has launched a new campaign targeting motorists parking illegally with the use of a £40,000 camera car that has Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology.

Council chiefs are targeting parents parking illegally during the morning and afternoon school run and during a 10-minute trial the Mail was taken on, there were 76 illegal parkers nabbed, which adds up to more than £5,00 in fines.

From April last year to March this year, the council issued 6,927 penalty charge notices for £60, which saw 2,029 appeals launched.

Of that figure, 1,215 of those appeals were successfully fought, while the other 814 were left to cough up the £70 charge.

Between April 2009 and March 2010, the council issued 7,054 notices for illegal parking.

Of these, 2,002 generated appeals, with 1,227 being overturned and 775 being enforced.

A council spokesman said: “Parking penalty notices are withdrawn for a variety of reasons. For example, it could be because someone has forgotten to display their parking permit or their pay and display ticket has fallen from the windscreen.

“We have also had examples of disabled badges being displayed upside down, which has prevented us from viewing the badge holder’s details.

“Each individual appeal is considered on its own merits, but we always take all circumstances into account before arriving at a decision.”

l Have you appealed against a parking ticket? Contact the Mail newsdesk on (01429) 239380.