Penalty Charge Notice
penalty Charge Notices
The Road Traffic Act 1991 (RTA) was introduced to decriminalise parking fines,allowing local authorities to issue penalty charge notices (PCNs) for contraventions such as parking on yellow lines, footway parking, not displaying valid pay and display tickets or parking permits within a controlled parking zone (CPZ).The powers of the RTA were officially handed over to local authorities by the Secretary of State in 1994. From 31 March 2008,the parkingenforcement provisions in the RTA were replaced by the Traffic Management Act 2004 (TMA). Decriminalised parking enforcement (DPE) is now known as civil parking enforcement (CPE).Parking attendants (PAs) are now known as civil enforcement officers (CEOs). The most common type of parking ticket is a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN), issued by local authorities and Transport for London.
CEOs patrol the streets and the car parks 7 days a week. They do not work to targets or quotas but in order to achieve compliance with parking regulations, they are instructed to issue a penalty charge notice (PCN) whenever a vehicle is found to be in contravention of a parking restriction. Once the PCN has been issued, photographs are taken as evidence of the vehicle in contravention and notes are made in the CEO's pocket book or hand held computer. Photographs are helpful in cases of a challenge but are not compulsory. In bad weather or if it is dark they are unlikely to be useful. If the driver returns whilst the PCN is being issued, it can be served upon the motorist instead of being fixed to the windscreen. Once issued, the CEO must not take back the PCN but will advise the motorist to follow the instructions on the PCN, or to contact the Parking Office for advice. The CEO does not have the authority to give opinions on the possible outcome of any challenge and is not obliged to stay at the scene if being verbally abused or threatened. All CEOs are equipped with radios and can call for assistance if necessary, either to help members of the public with their queries or to call for help if under threat.