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We flirt and cry to avoid clamp fines

IRISH motorists resort to tears, tantrums and flirtation in a bid to dodge clamping fines.

A new study has shown that drivers believe they can get out of paying a fine by pleading ignorance.

Over one in 10 Irish men and women pretended they were unaware that they had parked illegally to avoid a clamping fine.

Women were the most likely to appeal to tender feelings by crying or fabricating a "bleeding heart" excuse.

Nearly 5pc of women also tried to flirt their way out of paying the fine, the survey revealed.

In comparison, men felt that outrage and anger -- such as yelling at the phone operator -- was a better defence against a fine, according to a study by the AA Motor insurance. However, the majority of drivers -- 73.8pc of men and 68.1pc of women -- felt that arguing was not going to get them anywhere.

Other frequent excuses used by motorists included mentioning a lack of funds, lying that the meter was not working, or stating that the driver had to rush to the toilet and did not have time to pay the meter.

The study was based on data provided by nearly 20,000 drivers across Ireland.

It revealed that Dublin was the part of the country with the highest prevalence of both public and private clampings.

While figures suggested that only 7pc of drivers around the Republic had their vehicles clamped over the last 12 months, the incidence rose to 11pc in Dublin.

This compared to 5pc of respondents from Cork and Waterford, 4pc of participants in Galway and 3pc in Limerick.

None of the respondents were clamped five or more times over the past year and Dublin was the only place were 0.1pc of participants admitted to being clamped four times over the past 12 months.

The vast majority of drivers who had their car clamped within the last year, felt that the circumstances were unfair.