Friday, July 16, 2010

Fletch Bus Lane Rip Off

The NZ Herald has a front page story about drivers being fined for using a bus lane.

Motorists have been stung $4.2 million in fines in one year for using bus lanes in Auckland City - even though they have no indication when they can enter lanes to turn left.
Traffic defence lawyer Steve Cullen says the lack of signage is disgraceful.
Under nationwide Transport Agency rules, motorists can drive on bus lanes to turn left if they are within 50m of an intersection.
But Auckland motorists are liable for a $150 fine if they switch too soon.
City council officers often place cameras at the 50m mark to record infringements, but there are no road signs to indicate when motorists can enter a bus lane to turn left.
Councils have been flooded with complaints from ticketed motorists claiming they were within the 50m space.
I know, because it happened to my folks, who had to go into the City and aren't used to driving there. They got a bit lost until my mother finally recognized where they were on Symonds St and knew to get into the left lane. Unfortunately, it was one of the bus lanes that you are only allowed to be in, in the 50 meters leading up to the turn. No sign posts said anything about about it, and there was a woman with a camera on the side of the road taking picutres.

They wrote in to contest the ticket, explaining about the circumstances, but were told that unfamiliarity with a place is no excuse and that it behooves the driver to follow all the rules. So they ended up having to pay the ticket. I see that a lot of other people are complaining about it as well, and it has also been featured on Fair Go.

All I have to say is: shame on you Auckland City for ripping people off !! It's purely an exercise in revenue collecting ! If the North Shore can put up signs (as was mentioned on Fair Go) I don't know why Auckland City can't. Perhaps because it will stop them dipping their hands into hard working (and in this case, retired) people's pockets.

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2 comment(s):

Lucia Maria said...

That's pretty bad, really. Like highway robbery.

ZenTiger said...

Entrapment. We need to fine the Councils for bad behaviour. Maybe make a class action style claim.

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