*Language alert: If bad language offends tune out now!
Over the course of the past decade we’ve had many occasions to interact with parking enforcement officers in Vancouver, with a variety of results.
When you drive a large truck it’s not uncommon to have trouble finding a space large enough to park, especially in places like Gastown, the Westend or Kits. If the customer hasn’t made arrangements for parking we end up in no parking zones, double parked or partially obstructing a side walk. As a rule we expect a ticket for all parking violations so it comes as quite a surprise when an enforcement officer either passes by without a word or says ‘I know you’re just doing your job’. These officers are few and far between but it is refreshing to get a break.
Recently the City of Vancouver put forward the details of a proposed plan whereby vehicles that had been ticketed in excess of 5 times would be towed, even though they had paid all of the previous tickets in a timely manner. The City would lead you to believe it’s all about compliance but to me it’s a short sited, malicious and arrogant policy shift that’s all about increasing revenue. Consider this; In the course of our work it’s typically the customer’s responsibility to ensure there is adequate parking for the truck and invariably the majority never do. As such we get ticketed at least 5 times a month and more. What happens with a new policy implementation, are you going to try to tow us every time a parking enforcement officer sees us?
The City of Vancouver has some very nasty people working parking enforcement, here’s a couple of my stories. We were in Gastown some time ago parked in a way that attracted a parking enforcement officer. I came out of the building just to see him putting the ticket on the windshield and walking away. I went over to plead my case given there was no other place to park near the building. He turned to me and said: ‘I wasn’t going to give you a ticket but I see that you have one outstanding, so here’s another.’ F*** me, I couldn’t believe it, what a nasty little bastard! Another time we were driving down Hornby St at Nelson when my phone rang. I pulled over just past Nelson in a no parking zone to take the call, as I was talking a parking enforcement officer was riding up Hornby St in the bike lane. As soon as I saw him I put the phone down and merged back into traffic – you wouldn’t believe it but he chased us down Hornby St until we go stuck at a red light, and guess what? We got a ticket in the mail!