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  Reply # 414693 8-Dec-2010 16:05 Send private message

Thanks for all the comments everyone!

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  Reply # 414774 8-Dec-2010 21:13 Send private message

What happens if a person stopped next to a car to parallel park behind it and the enforcement camera took a photo?

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  Reply # 414816 8-Dec-2010 22:51

That was basically what happened in the case reported in the Dompost and given time on National Radio. The driver was stopped waiting for a car that was leaving one of the parks. The camera car didn't see or record the other car. The council spokesman made a valiant effort to defend this stupidity.

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  Reply # 414817 8-Dec-2010 22:51 Send private message

Bung:
StarBlazer:
wreck90: Here in Mt Maunganui, courier vans constantly block traffic in the town center. They just stop their vans in the middle of the road, jump out and deliver their goods.


Annoyingly they probably have a permit to do so!


Goods vehicles and Taxis do have certain allowances.

http://www.legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2004/0427/latest/DLM303617.html#DLM303617


taxi drivers in wgtn have told me they had to be careful where they stop for the last two years as the council was cracking down on them stopping double parked, too close to corners, or on yellow lines...




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  Reply # 414823 8-Dec-2010 23:03

Well that's fair enough, the taxi excuse is only for double parking when there's no reasonable alternative while picking up or dropping off fares. Corners and yellow lines have never been OK.

If some of the idle cabs left the city there'd be room for the rest :P



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  Reply # 414869 9-Dec-2010 09:21 Send private message

tombrownzz: What happens if a person stopped next to a car to parallel park behind it and the enforcement camera took a photo?


That's exactly the point, the camera operator has no context for why the car is where it is, and s/he is just making a judgement call in the time it takes for them to drive past the vehicle in question.  

My other concern is while these council people are observing rule breakers and pressing the camera trigger on the door, how are they expected to focus on safely driving themselves through peak CBD traffic - which is usually a bloody nightmare anyway!? 

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  Reply # 414896 9-Dec-2010 10:07 Send private message

Regs:
Bung:
StarBlazer:
wreck90: Here in Mt Maunganui, courier vans constantly block traffic in the town center. They just stop their vans in the middle of the road, jump out and deliver their goods.


Annoyingly they probably have a permit to do so!


Goods vehicles and Taxis do have certain allowances.

http://www.legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2004/0427/latest/DLM303617.html#DLM303617


taxi drivers in wgtn have told me they had to be careful where they stop for the last two years as the council was cracking down on them stopping double parked, too close to corners, or on yellow lines...


I wish they would crack down on lazy taxis who double park next to EMPTY car parks!

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  Reply # 415018 9-Dec-2010 13:39 Send private message

gehenna: My other concern is while these council people are observing rule breakers and pressing the camera trigger on the door, how are they expected to focus on safely driving themselves through peak CBD traffic - which is usually a bloody nightmare anyway!? 


A very good point which was discussed at the time of the news release - I believe the lame answer given was that they have been given "special" training.

As there have not been any reports in the news of where an enforcement vehicle has rear-ended/damaged any other vehicle it must have been top notch!

The point about waiting for a space is tricky - by the letter of the law it is still an infringement - by the spirit of the law it would normally get overlooked.  This is why they have a process for people to claim.  I wish you luck with yours - like I say - if you don't ask the answer is no.




Procrastination eventually pays off.

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  Reply # 415335 10-Dec-2010 00:50 Send private message

{A very good point which was discussed at the time of the news release - I believe the lame answer given was that they have been given "special" training.}

I'd like to know what this 'Special Training' entails.
Do they have to click a quota to justify their salary? :)

I'd like to provide some special training for these admin types... just 5 mins would be enough.


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  Reply # 415423 10-Dec-2010 10:23 Send private message

Maybe the camera should be used in conjunction with the types of vid cams fitted to some trucks that continuously loop record until their incident button is pressed. It then saves the last 10secs(?) of video, enabling the driver/employer to determine fault in the event of an 'incident' involving the vehicle.

Using one of these in parallel to the the higher res enforcement camera would enable whoever is responsible for the infringement notices to determine if the infringing vehicle was stopped legitimately or not.

You'd then have fewer disputes about whether you were at fault... and the dispute process is simply an additional ratepayer burden.

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  Reply # 415439 10-Dec-2010 10:57 Send private message

Obviously aiming, focussing and operating a camera whilst driving is inherently safer than using a mobile phone then!

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  Reply # 415457 10-Dec-2010 11:30 Send private message

oxnsox: Maybe the camera should be used in conjunction with the types of vid cams fitted to some trucks that continuously loop record until their incident button is pressed. It then saves the last 10secs(?) of video, enabling the driver/employer to determine fault in the event of an 'incident' involving the vehicle.

Using one of these in parallel to the the higher res enforcement camera would enable whoever is responsible for the infringement notices to determine if the infringing vehicle was stopped legitimately or not.

You'd then have fewer disputes about whether you were at fault... and the dispute process is simply an additional ratepayer burden.


That would make sense.  Also, with a single photo how to you prove the car was even stopped!

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  Reply # 415932 11-Dec-2010 18:23 Send private message

If, as the OP says, the car was only stopped while he walked from the footpath to the car, surely he would show up in the photo?

The council can see he was walking towards the car?

If the photo was taken from behind they should see brakelights on and someone walking towards the car and they can put two and two toegther and hopefully not get 7.




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  Reply # 415948 11-Dec-2010 19:20 Send private message

Evolbob: Do they have to click a quota to justify their salary? :)

Wrong word.  Badly used in so many instances.  Quota implies a limit not a target.

@Gehenna: I'm also very interested to hear how this pans out. I'd encourage you to take this all the way through the Court system.  The rule book should guide, but common sense (which seems to be lacking in the vast majority of the population) should prevail.




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  Reply # 417640 15-Dec-2010 14:25 Send private message

@technicaljoe:
You are correct - the wider area has been established for two important safety reasons:
1) To address the large number of bicycle accidents that were occurring in that area.  Previously there were diagonal parking spaces there and drivers were backing into cyclists and traffic without looking.  Unlike other parts of Victoria Street, this was exacerbated because of the number of people stopping temporarily to pick up and drop off things at that location.  Therefore short term (5 minute) parallel parks have been installed, with the remaining space allocated for use by cyclists and manoeuvring vehicles (not for short term parking).
2) Victoria Street is a main arterial route.  The extra space helps dirivers to get in and out of parking spaces without impacting on the arterial traffic, especially during peak hours.  Impacting on peak hour traffic typically leads to stop-start flows that consequently lead to nose-to-tail accidents, intersection blocking etc.

I would be happy to answer any technical questions related to parking, such as how and why we enforce this.

In relation to the camera car, please be assured that the drivers firstly focus on their driving, and would only observe offenders as any other responsible and observant driver would (i.e. they are not distracted when carrying out their work - the camera assists in recording the details that they observe).

They do not need to focus or handle the camera at all - it has a fish eye lens that captures adequate information through the press of one of several conveniently located buttons.  Despite some technical experts pointing out that there are always better systems available to do the same job (technically or financially), we are quite satisfied with the performance of the current camera and lens.

The warden in the camera car only focuses on the types of offences that typically lead to accidents.  Double parking to pick up or drop off people typically results in:
- pedestrians crossing traffic and opening doors etc in dangerous locations (e.g. with cyclists coming past)
- blocking visibility for pedestrians and drivers wanting to cross the road or enter the traffic flow (legitimately)
- following traffic taking risks by passing in unsafe locations or crossing the centreline (which could then result in pedestrians crossing the road from the other side being hit as they were not looking in the correct direction).

In a normal shift, a warden may observe many offences, and does use discretion as to which are progressed through to an infringement notice.  Furthermore, the information gathered by the warden goes through a second set of adjudication to ensure that there are no extenuating circumstances applicable and that the tickets are appropriate to be issued.  The warden's observations include important aspects such as:
- whether the vehicle was stationary.
- whether they observed any empty parking space or vehicle trying to exit a parking space that the offending vehicle was trying to get into.  Tickets are only issued if there is no empty space and no vehicle exiting a parking space at the time.

This is exactly the same as for wardens operating on foot - the fact that they are using a camera to obtain supplementary evidence actually reduces the likelihood that they have missed any extenuating information as they can go back and review details before issuing the ticket.

Wellington has one of the highest accident rates for pedestrians per capita in the whole country.  We are addressing this through education and enforcement campaigns aimed both at pedestrians and at drivers committing offences that typically lead to accidents.  As many people have already said, the best way to avoid getting tickets therefore is to park legally and with due consideration for others' safety.

And lastly, there are no such things as quotas - this is just an urban myth :-)

Jon Visser
Manager, Infrastructure Performance
Wellington City Council

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