Transport for London employees rack up huge parking fines
Transport for London have repeatedly come under fire for imposing 'draconian' parking restrictions on London roads.
However Politics.co.uk can reveal they have themselves splashed out hundreds of thousands of pounds on parking fines incurred by their own employees.
A freedom of information request by this website reveals that the organisation, responsible for managing the capital's main roads, has paid out almost £170,000 in the past four years alone to local authorities and others.
TfL, which is chaired by London mayor Boris Johnson, justified the figures by saying they were received by employees conducting important work.
However, opposition politicians accused the organisation of double standards on the issue.
"These fines are not only a serious waste of money by TfL but they also show that too many TfL staff believe in the mantra of do as I say, not as I do when it comes to traffic enforcement," Liberal Democrat London assembly member Caroline Pidgeon said today.
"Transport for London has no hesitation in handing out penalty charge notices for people who park on red routes or who get caught in yellow boxes,
''Anyone who has been hit by these fines will want to know why the organisation still seems incapable of ensuring its own employees comply with traffic restrictions which affect everyone else."
TfL is frequently accused by motorists and businesses of being too aggressive in enforcing parking restrictions.
Earlier this year, they admitted regularly fining motorists for parking for just five minutes in loading bays, explaining that it was "not always practical" to observe the vehicle for the full allowable 20 minutes.
A spokesperson for the organisation said they were working to reduce the number of fines collected by their employees.
"The majority of Penalty Charge & Enforcement Notices were issued to TfL vehicles parked outside stations and in bus lanes while staff members carried out work," they said.
"TfL has been working to reduce the number of parking fines received and the number has halved in recent years. However, at times it is necessary to park vehicles in restricted areas in order to carry out urgent works."