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park and ride

Local anger as row of cars clamped at "chock-a-block" train station

The station has recently become busier because of a new route.

IMG_9804 Patricia Helowicz Patricia Helowicz

LOCALS LIVING NEAR Newbridge railway station in Kildare say their cars were clamped in the station car park despite having valid parking tickets.

The incident happened yesterday with up to a dozen cars clamped.

Pictures from yesterday afternoon show that most of the clamped cars are parked along the car park’s fence so as not to block an entrance or exit.

One of the locals whose car was clamped says the private company who clamps the cars explained to the motorists that their cars were not parked in marked parking spaces.

Patricia Helowicz, however, says that she’s been using the train station for over two years but that the recent opening of the Phoenix Park tunnel means that the station has been “chock-a-block”.

IMG_9811 (1) Patricia Helowicz Patricia Helowicz

“With the new trains introduced to Grand Canal Dock, I’ve never seen the carpark that full at 8am and they totally don’t consider that,” she said.

Helowicz returned to the station after 2pm and found that her car, along with at least eleven others, were clamped despite having permits.

“As far as we’re considered we didn’t do anything wrong and we were penalised and fined,” she says.

We consider ourselves their customers. We are the customers who paid for a service and did our absolute best to help them to maintain the order in the car park on that day because it was chock-a-block. It was at full capacity when we got there so we made sure we found the parking spaces without obstructing anything.

Parking company NCPS is in charge of the parking facilities at the station and its company details are on the clamping notices placed on the vehicles.

IMG_9831 Motorists were forced to pay the fine. Patricia Helowicz Patricia Helowicz

Helowicz says that she had no choice but to pay the €120 fine but that at least one other motorist didn’t have the funds to have their car released. Another elderly couple had just returned from the hospital and were upset by the incident, she says.

“Initially we were so angry we were hanging on there hoping something would happen. We contacted Fiona O’Loughlin and other TDs but they couldn’t do anything. They wouldn’t budge, we had to pay it and that was it.”

Local TD Fiona O’Loughlin has recently raised the issue of toilet facilities at the station, asking the Minister for Transport to intervene.

Read: Are clampers allowed park illegally? >

Read: Despite delays and ticketing issues, Irish Rail hails a ‘very successful morning’ for Phoenix Park tunnel >

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