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Motorist racked up €21,000 in fines on 349 parking tickets in just three years

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'The person amassed 349 parking tickets, with an average of €60 owing on each.' (stock photo)

'The person amassed 349 parking tickets, with an average of €60 owing on each.' (stock photo)

'The person amassed 349 parking tickets, with an average of €60 owing on each.' (stock photo)

A motorist ran up almost €21,000 in unpaid parking fines on 349 tickets over the course of just three years.

The driver was one of three people in a single local authority area to clock up more than €10,000 in fines, according to records released under Freedom of Information.

Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said the person amassed 349 parking tickets, with an average of €60 owing on each.

According to the council, the person has since been disqualified from driving following district court proceedings and multiple convictions have been secured.

The second worst offender owed the council €18,900 for 315 separate tickets, and has also been the subject of court proceedings and convicted.

The third five-figure offender, however, has so far evaded the clutches of justice, having run up a €11,240 bill for 281 separate tickets.

The council said: "[The] vehicle [is] not registered in the Republic of Ireland so [the council is] unable to pursue."

That was the same situation for four other motorists who regularly break parking laws in the borough, whom owe €9,720, €6,160, €5,900, and €4,760 respectively.

Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said that parking fines had brought in €3.34m over the past three years.

However, income from tickets fell last year to its lowest level in several years at €1.01m as the percentage of people paying their fines fell significantly.

In 2017, 85pc of parking fines were paid, which dropped to 81pc the following year. In 2019, the rate fell again to 79pc.

The council said it did not clamp any cars and that fixed-charge notices were issued for parking offences, including: non-payment, use of a loading bay, parking on a footpath or a double yellow line, and parking in a disabled person's bay, or in a cycle lane.

The rate of payment of parking fines was even lower in Fingal County Council where just over two-thirds of fines have been paid over the past three years (68pc in 2019).

Income from parking fines rose sharply last year, however, to €356,056 from €294,208 in 2018.

Fingal has also been contending with repeat offenders, although not in quite the same league as Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, according to the records.

The worst offender in the Fingal area owes 199 separate unpaid fines totalling €7,960, well ahead of the next worst person with €2,820 owed on 65 tickets.

At least eight other people owed between €1,520 and €2,560 to the council over the past three years for repeated parking transgressions.

In South Dublin County Council, the rate of parking fine evasion has been going in the right direction but more than a quarter of fines are still going unpaid.

The council said in 2017 that 65pc of parking fines had been paid. By last year, this had risen to 74pc.

Irish Independent