Parking tickets on the rise in Mid-Ulster.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

MID-ULSTER residents were issued with over 8,000 parking tickets in 2017, according to the latest government statistics.

The Department for Inf astructure's (DFI) figures released for the year show traffic wardens dished out 5,708 PCNs (Penalty Charge Notices) for on street parking offences, and a further 2,382 for unlawful off street parking.

Magherafelt remains the Mid-Ulster hotbed for parking tickets for the third consecutive year, after receiving a total of 2,546 over the 12 month period.

Cookstown recorded the highest number of on street offences, with a total of 1,066 PCNs issued.

However, the town didn't register a single off street offence, helped by the volume of free car parks in the area.

The amount of PCNs issued in Dungannon has steadily increased since 2015 - 1,414 offences recorded in 2017 - with the DFI's statistics showing a hike of 2,509 in the town.

The statistics reveal Coalisland didn't receive a single parking ticket for the fourth consecutive year.

An investigation was launched into the alleged threatening and 'hounding' of a traffic warden in the town in 2016.

In January 2017, the government announced the removal of wardens from the area, with the Infrastructure minister at the time, Chris Hazzard, stating it was due to "fewer than 10 penalties being issued on average per month."

Aughnacloy becomes the least affected area by parking ticket after it was revealed there were no PCNs issued in 2017.

Donaghmore, Fivemiletown and Moy all saw a decrease in the number of parking offences, with only 1, 12 and 35 tickets issued in the respective areas in the 12 months.

Clogher's traffic wardens remained busy, with 74 offences warranting a PCN, an increase of 30 from 2016's statistics.

A DFI spokesperson said: "The aim of parking enforcement is to reduce the number of vehicles illegally parked on our roads.

"This in turn reduces traffic congestion and helps traffic to flow more freely, assists delivery vehicles, allows buses to keep to their timetable, improves road safety and provides accessibility for all road users, including Blue Badge holders.

"The enforcement of on-street limited waiting and pay and display spaces, Park and Ride charged car parks and Council operated car parks also encourages a turnover of parking spaces, giving shoppers and visitors more opportunities to find suitable parking."


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