Editor: Re: How was I to pay for parking? (The Times, Feb. 13.)
While I 100 per cent sympathize with this mother, as I have a young son of my own and can’t imagine stopping to pay for ER parking if he were both bleeding and vomiting, I do see the need for the Langley hospital, and any hospital, to have pay parking both in the ER and general parking lots. Can you imagine if the ER parking was free, but the general parking had a fee? There would never be an open spot in the ER parking.
And while the hospital could post signs indicating the ER parking is for emergency patients only, how could they possibly police this and ensure the free spots were being used in good faith? I support the idea of some leniency (i.e. no ticket) if the user had initially paid for parking but the parking had lapsed. Things are beyond one’s control in the ER, but I do see the need for pay parking.
It is definitely unfortunate though that the ticket price is so high, as $80 does seem a bit steep given the location of the lot and the obvious reason why someone would have failed to pay or gone over their time. Perhaps the hospital could look at a reduction in the cost of the fines?