Call for private clampers to be banned

* Call to outlaw clampers * No route of appeal for motorists * Already illegal in Scotland...

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What Car? Staff
21 August 2009

Call for private clampers to be banned

Car clamping on private land should be banned, says the AA.

The AA says clamping should be outlawed in England and Wales, as it is already illegal in Scotland, because up to one in 10 drivers have been clamped or fined by private enforcers with no redress to an independent arbitration process.

Paul Watters, the AA's head of public affairs, said: 'Private parking enforcement is a big business that's generating millions of pounds, but the public have absolutely no route of appeal it's a civil matter and no one is interested in helping.'

Frightening methods of punishment, which border on 'criminality', are also being meted out to drivers who have been clamped, according to the AA.

Clampdown on whole industry
The Government is currently looking at a range of proposals to regulate the industry, including forcing all clamping businesses to register with a trade association.

The AA, however, says that the industry's trade association, the British Parking Association (BPA), does not have the powers to regulate car clampers.

Patrick Troy, chief executive of the BPA said the AA hasn't come up with a credible plan to address the issues.

He said: 'The BPA has established a code of practice for wheel clampers. This, we believe, is a good first step to improving standards, but we would like to see the Government regulate the sector further so that motorists are better protected.

'Our scheme is not perfect and we would welcome the AA to work with us, but they have resolutely refused to do so.'