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UK Govt bans wheel clamping on private land

The British Government on Tuesday announced a blanket ban on wheel clamping on private land in England and Wales to end the menace of rogue wheel-clampers once and for all.



London: The British Government on Tuesday
announced a blanket ban on wheel clamping on private land in
England and Wales to end the menace of rogue wheel-clampers
once and for all.

The ban will be introduced in the Government`s Freedom
Bill in November and will come into force shortly after the
Royal Assent.
Anyone who clamps a vehicle or tows it away on private
land will face tough penalties once the ban is in place.

"The Government is committed to ending the menace of
rogue private sector wheel-clampers once and for all. For too
long motorists have fallen victim to unscrupulous tactics by
many clamping firms," Home Office Minister Lynn Featherstone
said.

Reports of motorists being marched to cash points or
left stranded after their car has been towed are simply
unacceptable, the minister said.

"A ban on clamping and towing on private land will end
this abuse and companies who decide to flout new laws will
face severe penalties," she said.

Regional and Local Transport Minister Norman Baker
said: "The rules governing parking on private land should be
proportionate and should not result in motorists being
intimidated or forced to pay excessive fines. Cowboy clampers
have had ample opportunity to mend their ways but the cases of
bullying and extortion persist.
"That is why we are putting an end to these outrageous
practices once and for all to ensure that drivers no longer
have to fear intimidation from rogue traders, allowing the
parking industry to begin to restore its reputation with the
motoring public."

Currently, any individual undertaking wheel clamping
must hold a frontline license from the Security Industry
Authority (SIA), with supervisors or directors holding a
non-frontline license.

This activity will cease once the ban is in place.

It will not change existing traffic enforcement by
local authorities and police on highways. The ban will also
apply to towing away and all other forms of vehicle
immobilization.

Once implemented, anyone who clamps (or otherwise
immobilizes) a vehicle or tows it away on private land without
specific legal authority to do so will face criminal
proceedings or civil sanctions.

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) will
retain the legal authority to clamp or tow away vehicles as
part of its work in combating evasion of Vehicle Excise Duty.

The Vehicle and Operator Services Authority has
similar powers to prevent the use of unroadworthy vehicles on
the road.

The SIA currently licenses any individual in England
and Wales involved in immobilizing vehicles on private land
with a view to charge a release fee.

It also requires the licensing of anyone involved in
blocking in or towing away vehicles for the same purpose, and
of those who collect the fee.

This activity will cease once the ban is in place.

Presently, there are 2,150 individuals who are licensed
by the SIA to clamp.

PTI

From Zee News

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