Consultant Chris Gough returned to the car park j after his shift and drove home, but three weeks later a parking charge notice arrived in the post from a private parking firm
Image: MEDIA WALES)
A doctor was hit with a parking ticket at hospital car park after gruelling 13-hour shift.
Dr Chris Gough had left his car at a multi-storey at the University Hospital of Wales (UHW) as he began his shift.
After a gruelling 13-hour shift, the consultant returned to the car park just before 9pm and drove home.
But three weeks later a parking charge notice arrived in the post from ParkingEye ordering him to pay a fine.
Despite having a staff parking permit, Dr Gough said he later discovered it was not valid for this particular area of the car park.
He posted a picture of his ParkingEye letter and said on Twitter : “Getting a ticket for parking at the hospital in order to work a 13-hour shift during a pandemic.
“Because we don’t have enough else on our plates. I even have a staff permit, but apparently it does not include this car park.”
After his tweet was posted, it attracted thousands of likes and people even responded offering to pay his fine for him.
Walesonline reports his response to the social media post.
Dr Gough said: “Many of you have so kindly offered to cover the cost of this. It’s hard to put into words how grateful I am for your kind words. Seriously, I am humbled by you all – thank you.
“I have no doubt at all that Cardiff and Vale UHB are in the nightmare position of balancing patient/relative parking with that of staff parking, and I happened to get caught in the middle. Yet another reason the Covid pandemic sucks.”
His colleagues also responded to this on Twitter, including Dr Farbod Babolhavaeji, a consultant in emergency medicine at UHW who said: “I absolutely hate this. It’s utterly disgraceful and I’m sick of it. It’s stuff like this that tips people’s morale over the edge.”
Since June 2018, parking at the University Hospital of Wales has been free for patients, visitors and staff.
Drivers, however, still need to register their car’s details at one of 40 terminals on site if they stay for longer than four hours.
Registering then allows people to keep their cars in their space for an additional four hours.
If people don’t do this, they run the risk of receiving a fine either by an on-site warden walking the site or via post via the ANPR cameras. Most fines are £40 but increase to £70 if left unpaid for 14 days.
Stuart Walker, the interim CEO of Cardiff and Vale UHB, responded to Dr Gough and said he will arrange for the fine to be cancelled.
“We have had to re-introduce some parking restrictions to ensure patient access,” he said.
Dr Gough said he would have appealed the fine with ParkingEye were it not to be rescinded.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.