An unfortunate British builder was saddled with 51 fines in a single day after driving up and down a residents only road.
It's already a mission to get yourself up and go to the gym - but for John Barrett, a 54-year-old father-of-three, his motivation came with a whopping price.
As part of his drive to the gym, he takes a residents only road in Chiswick, west London. All seemed well with that route, as he hadn't heard a peep from anyone - until five months later, when thousands of pounds worth of fines came soaring through his letterbox.
The charges, accrued over a five-month period but all delivered in one unlucky day, amounted to a staggering £6,350.
The fines themselves were around £130 a pop, so that's more than 50 fines in total.
Anyone who's accidentally driven through a bus lane or received a parking fine knows of the frustration, but more than £6,000 is eye-watering to even think about.
Not only was John shocked when his wife Lisa, 54, told him about the fines, but he was confused. He claims he has a permit that allows his Tesla to use the route freely without penalty, and the fines have been issued incorrectly.
He fired off some emails with his grievances to Hounslow Council, but John ran into some difficulties. He said: "It's ridiculous, no warning or anything.
"No letter to say you've been caught on camera driving on this road and we don't think you should be. It's incredible. Imagine if I was someone really vulnerable. Not to mention that my permit allows me to use that road.
"The cost to the taxpayer must have been massive - each notice has three screenshots of my car. The time it takes them to print out those screenshots and put the letter in the envelope would cost a fortune.
"All they had to do was put my registration into their computer and they'd see I had a permit. This has taken so much of my time."
According to John, the area's traffic system has seen a number of changes over the past two years, particularly with regards to residents' only roads and cycle lanes. All these changes without enough warning have led to the fines, he said.
John continued: "What a waste of money. Two in five people are living in poverty here, and so many of us are worried about how to pay the bills at the moment.
"It's such a stress and it's not okay to give people no warning, and I have 28 days to pay but they get 56 days just to reply to an email. It's maddening.
"What are they doing that they need 56 days to write an email? I respond to over 50 emails a day."
Hounslow Council has since responded to John's complaints, offering an explanation and confirming all of his fines have been cancelled.
A Hounslow Council spokesperson said: "Restrictions to access on Hartington Road are designed to reduce through traffic on residential roads, thereby improving air quality and safety for pedestrians and cyclists.
"Prior to the introduction of the restrictions, over 8000 vehicles passed through this road on an average week, consisting of mostly non-residents.
"Registered vehicles, belonging to local residents, are prevented from receiving penalty charges by using number plates and addresses which are checked to validate exemption.
"Unfortunately the lease company for Mr Barrett's vehicle had provided incorrect address details meaning the exemption was not applied and penalty charges became valid.
"All charges have been cancelled."
Words: Cameron Frew
Featured Image Credit: SWNS
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