Pain in the grass: 13 parkers stung $667 in one council hit
An upset father who had never received a parking fine in his life was shocked to return to his car to find a $667 parking ticket on his windshield.
He was one of 13 unlucky parkers who received the same penalty at the same spot in a "lucrative" enforcement swoop.
Lyndon Arnold, from Brisbane, was holidaying on the Coast with his daughter at the weekend when they decided to go paddleboarding at Cotton Tree.
After circling the suburb several times looking for a park, Mr Arnold settled for a spot on the grass along Fourth Ave where about a dozen other cars were parked.
Within five minutes a Sunshine Coast Council parking inspector had placed a $667 infringement notice on his car.
Does council need more parking around Cotton Tree?
This poll ended on 01 January 2020.
Yes, parking is terrible there.
No, he did the wrong thing and deserved that fine.
I don't go there much.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
"I was pretty shocked considering the price of the fine," Mr Arnold said.
"I tried not to make a deal out of it at the time because I didn't want my daughter to worry but I couldn't hide that I was upset.
"I hadn't done anything dangerous or parked in an unsafe way."
The infringement notice gave no other explanation than "undertaking local law prescribed activity without approval".
Mr Arnold said he never expected a parking fine to be so expensive.
"I'd never received a parking fine before in my life but after talking with friends who had received parking fines before they said they were usually only $100 or $150," he said.
"It would be quite lucrative for the council to fine every person that parks in that spot on the weekends.
"So you think they would be able to afford some bollards or a sign to stop people parking there or even create more parking spaces."
Council confirmed 12 other drivers received the same infringement notice, totalling $8671 in fines.
"The fines in question relate to incidents where vehicles were unlawfully parked in a council park," a council spokesman said.
"Due to the potential safety risks and potential for damage to vegetation within council parks, a permit must be obtained by any vehicle owner wishing to do so.
"Council officers issued the fines in response to complaints from concerned park users."
The spokesman said parking within a council park without a permit was an offence under the local laws.
He said the penalty unit was set by the State Government annually and the council applied the unit fee to the penalty amount.
"Anyone who receives a parking fine can apply to the council for a review."
Mr Arnold said he had started the review process with the council.