Editorial: Bare all facts in mind. ...

By Annemarie Quill

Parking wardens being able to fine for bald tyres is causing a big stir in the Bay.
Parking wardens being able to fine for bald tyres is causing a big stir in the Bay.

Every day's a school day they say.

Every day we learn or do something new. Today I never thought I would be defending those most maligned species - parking wardens. But here I am on their side.

John Cousins' story on Wednesday about parking wardens being given power to issue instant $150 fines for bald tyres has caused a furore in town.

Councillor Rick Curach said it would deter people from visiting the downtown area once bald tyres were added to the expired warrants and registrations checklist.

Labour's Rachel Jones said it is bad news for those struggling to make ends meet.

Now Mayor Crosby in today's story says he even plans to stand in the way of the plan saying "The last thing people could afford was a $150 fine if their cars needed new tyres."

In my view, Crosby is wrong to step in. Plus councillors who say it is not a good thing are just going for the popularity vote.

Considers this bald fact: vehicles with bald tyres are unsafe on roads, causing accidents.

They potentially harm or kill people.

Yes, there is already the warrant system to check them, but tyres can become bald in between warrants, or even swapped out after the warrant.

If someone has bald tyres they shouldn't be driving downtown anyway.

If someone wants to blatantly break the law in this way are they the sort of person one would want frequenting the shops.

One of the roles of wardens is to encourage turnover of on-street car parks to support the commercial centres.

People who head downtown with bald tyres are not likely to be big spenders.

To the Mayor and Rachel Jones, what would they suggest as an alternative to putting pressure on people struggling to make ends meet? That people be allowed to drive in dangerous vehicles?

If they cannot afford the upkeep they shouldn't be driving.

They are breaking the law and do not deserve special treatment based on income.

Tickets are going to be issued for obviously bald tyres and wardens would not use tread depth gauges.

The reason why there is no period of grace is because bald tyres are an immediate safety issue. I think the fines are a good move.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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