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‘Dramatic’ surge in vehicle clamping

More than 340 vehicles were clamped during the month of September, compared to just 11 in the 20 months prior to that.

GSD MP Trevor Hammond pressed the Government to explain the “sudden and very dramatic” increase in the clamping of vehicles.

The information was revealed during a question and answer session of Parliament recently.

Mr Hammond further asked if this is now Government policy to enforce parking restrictions through a clamping policy.

Minister for traffic and transport, Paul Balban, pointed out that the law provides for the clamping of vehicles.

The vehicles that are clamped, Mr Balban added, are strictly those whose owners would otherwise find the fine on their windscreens, screw it up into a ball, throw it in the bin and would not come back into Gibraltar.

“The reason why there are so many clamps is it’s the only way we can ensure that an offending vehicle that is not locally registered can pay their dues like any other person.”

Mr Hammond queried whether there had been a change in government policy.

This is not a new policy, Mr Balban replied.

“Cars can be clamped or towed away depending on the circumstances. Local cars are not clamped or towed away as Fixed Penalty Notices are fixed to the windows. It is only the cars that we suspect do not have to come back to pay this fine – it is the only method that we have to be able to ensure that they pay,” he said.

Mr Hammond told the House that he has been approached by local residents who have been clamped recently and he highlighted Grand Parade as a hot spot for such clamping.

Mr Balban thanked Mr Hammond for the information and reiterated that his understanding was that local vehicles are not clamped but indicated that he would look into the matter.