Motorist claims ‘ordeal’ to get car de-clamped

By Maurice Garvey.

A MOTORIST claims she endured an “ordeal” to get her car de-clamped at a private car park in Tallaght.

Tallaght resident Tess McCann was clamped at the Aldi on Belgard Road on Tuesday February 26, but didn’t leave the car park in her Toyota Yaris again until March 4.

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Tess McCann at her car in the Aldi car park.

On February 26, she parked at the Aldi and got the Luas into the city centre for an appointment, dropping in to visit someone in St James’s Hospital on the way back, returning to the car approximately five hours later.

Aldi told The Echo it has been necessary to implement a clamping service at certain Aldi stores, to “ensure the availability of free parking for our customers.”

“The issue isn’t about clamping. I accept I was in the wrong, but I couldn’t pay the de-clamp fee,” said Ms McCann.

 “I couldn’t get through to the number on the phone so I went into the store. Staff were very nice but they couldn’t get through either, and a staff member gave me a lift home to Bancroft. I currently have ligament damage, so I wasn’t able to walk to the nearest ATM to pay cash for the release fee.”

Ms McCann said she also tried to contact Aldi head office between Tuesday and Thursday.

“I called gardai on Wednesday, and again on the Monday morning. They rang the operators and I went over in a taxi to pick up the car. I had to get a lot of taxis that week.”

A spokesperson for Aldi said the Belgard Road car park is managed by Nationwide Controlled Parking Systems Ireland (NCPS) and fines can be paid by both card or cash.

Aldi said individuals can “call the number provided on the notification sticker placed on their window and NCPS’s control room will process the payment.”

“NCPS’s individual car park operators can accept a cash payment. They do not have the facility to accommodate card payments, this must be completed over the phone.

“NCPS has confirmed to Aldi it did not experience any issues with its card payment service on February 26/27.”

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