If you thought that going to fight the Taliban in Afghanistan was dangerous, think again. The Courier Mail reported on January 6 of yet another incident of “parking ticket” rage, when a man was charged with assault, accused of trying to run down two Brisbane City Council parking inspectors in the CBD after they gave him a ticket.
Attacks on people and machines are becoming a daily occurrence; we recently reported on the vandalism against the new pay and display machines installed in our very own Balmoral Beach (see blog post Parking meter warfare in Balmoral) and other violent attacks against infringement officers (see post Parking officer survey reveals rising rate of abuse and assaults).
Indeed, on January 5, it was even reported that Wellington council in New Zealand is experiencing a significant turnover of wardens as a result of the treatment that they have received, including being sworn at, spat on, shouldered, grabbed, driven at in cars, and menaced with a wheelbarrow, with a total of 52 wardens complaining of abuse in 2009.
We believe that it is time that Councils took stock of the growing trend and started to consider new technologies which are becoming available which could lead to the elimination (or certainly a reduction) in the amount of expensive equipment needing to be deployed to collect parking fees.
Furthermore new systems of enforcement entering the market mean that the human element is removed from direct interaction with the public by being able to detect (and infringe) violating vehicles from the safety of their own car
Throw away the chalk and move to the 21st Century! The investment in these new systems will be more than justified not just by keeping workers compensation claims down, but also by rationalising capital and operating costs and maximising the effectiveness of revenue collection.