Council zebra zig zag parking ‘hypocrisy’

A driver has criticised parking enforcement “hypocrisy” after witnessing a traffic warden pull up on a zebra crossing no-parking zone near a school and busy shops to ticket a car in a taxi rank.

The man, who did not want to be named, was driving behind a white van on Stevenage High Street when it pulled over on the zig-zag lines approaching the busy crossing by Waitrose just down the road from Thomas Alleyne School - an offence that carries a �60 fine and three penalty points.

He said: “I have to say this caused my blood pressure to rise. The zig-zag lines are there for safety reasons – their purpose is to keep the area around the crossing clear so that those wishing to cross and approaching drivers have a clear view.

“When I saw the van’s hazard lights come on I briefly chastised myself for being too hasty - perhaps the driver had broken down. But to my astonishment and disgust, the driver emerged – a traffic warden. I think by this point my blood pressure was at dangerous levels. The hypocrisy – a person charged with enforcing parking contraventions himself committing a far more serious and potentially dangerous violation.”

The outraged driver parked and returned to remonstrate with the Stevenage Borough Council traffic warden, but said he was ignored.

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“I pointed out that he himself was committing an offence and that he was parked in a dangerous position but he didn’t respond. A local shopkeeper said this wasn’t the first time the traffic warden had parked on the zig-zag lines and that a complaint had previously been made.”

He called on the parking ticket to be cancelled, given the circumstances it was issued in, and for the traffic warden to pay �60 to the road safety charity, Brake.

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Stevenage Borough Council, said despite traffic wardens in the town carrying the council name on their uniforms, parking enforcement in the town is contracted out to private parking management company, APCOA, in a shared service controlled by East Herts Council (EHC).

A spokesman for EHC said the traffic warden had done nothing wrong, as their so-called civil enforcement officers “are allowed to park wherever they need to in order to carry out their duties.” She added: “We do encourage our CEO’s to park responsibly and safely.”

What do you think? Should traffic wardens be above the law? Is parking on a zebra crossing controlled zone “responsible and safe” parking? Let us know by emailing

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