Taxi driver who was helping elderly lady into hotel has his parking case struck out

Published 19/07/2014 | 12:00

John O’Donoughue pointing to the sign at the loading bay were he received his ticket.

A TAXI driver who was helping an elderly and disabled woman with her bags into the Hibernian Hotel in Mallow was told by a member of the public that he was being given a parking ticket because he was parked in a loading bay.

The baffled driver ended up in court this week, where he outlined his frustration at the parking arrangements in the town.

Solicitor David O'Meara said when his client, John O'Donoghue, of Groughta, Ballyclough, spoke to the traffic warden on duty, but he was told that he had "75% of the ticket written, but could appeal it if he wanted."

However, Mr O'Meara said that Mr O'Donoghue's appeal regarding his ticket for parking at a loading bay on Davis Street on November 30, 2013 never materialised when it was lodged at the office of Mallow Town Council.

"A loading bay does not have limitations. What the loading bay in Davis Street simply states is that it's a 'loading bay' and nothing more," said Mr O'Meara.

He furnished the court with pictures of loading bays in Henry Street in Limerick, which outlined that it's a goods vehicle loading bay, as were loading bays at Patrick Street, Midleton and Charleville.

He questioned the "lack of conformity" between the loading bay at Davis Street compared to the other towns. "There is no evidence that it's a goods vehicle loading bay. What we're looking at is a photograph that says, 'loading bay,' and nothing more," he said.

Mr O'Donoghue told Judge Brian Sheridan that he has been operating a business for almost 20 years and he does the Rural Transport programme four days a week, whereby he helps the elderly get into Mallow town. He said: "The traffic warden advised me that I could appeal it and so I did."

Mr O'Donoughue said that he went to Mallow Town Council's office but it was closed. However, he said a lady was in another nearby office and had told him she would lodge his appeal for him.

Solicitor for Mallow Town Council said they had no appeal on record. However, he said where Mr O'Donoghue had parked was clearly a loading bay. Solicitor for MTC said: "The signage that is up is per the regulations." However, Judge Sheridan said: "I have a discretion to strike this out and that is exactly what I'm going to do."

Corkman

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