MOTORISTS in two Fermanagh towns have been left fuming over the return of traffic wardens, who they believed had been axed for good.
In January the Herald reported how the then Infrastructure Minister Chris Hazzard had announced that, under a review of Transport NI’s operations, towns that averaged fewer than 10 parking violations per month would have their parking patrols removed. On the list of those with 10 or fewer violations were Lisnaskea and Irvinestown.
However, over the past number of days this paper has been contacted by a number of angry local motorists who said the ‘redcoats’ had returned to the towns and drivers were being fined.
“They have reappeared this morning advising they will be back in the town three days a week,” said one Irvinestown driver last week.
Another, who works in Lisnaskea and was ticketed in Irvinestown on the same day the above lady contacted the Herald, said she had noticed the wardens had been absent for some time but had now returned.
“It was last Wednesday, and I wasn’t parked long at all,” said the woman. “There were around five or six spaces back to back, there were no lines or markings. As far as I was concerned I was safe to park there.”
The lady added when she checked her ticket it stated she had been parked for one hour and fifteen minutes, just a matter of minutes after the official grace period had run out.
When contacted by the Herald regarding the issue, a spokesman for the Department for Infrastructure explained the review of parking had only taken effect in certain areas so far, and even then the towns could still see a traffic warden presence at times.
“As stated in January, any town that was routinely enforced and generated less than 10 penalty charge notices (PCNs)/vehicle drive aways (VDAs) on average per month will be removed from the schedule for routine traffic attendant deployment.
“The review has been completed in the Department’s southern division and a number of towns have been removed from scheduled enforcement.”
They said this same criteria will now be applied in other areas, including here in Fermanagh, but it was “too soon to speculate on how deployment in these areas, including Irvinestown, will change until the reviews have been completed.”
They concluded: “The Department will continue to visit all towns, including those removed from regular deployment, when need arises or when requested and resources are available.”
Posted: 2:17 pm April 19, 2017