No action taken against tycoons

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 22 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 22 January, 2013, 2:03am

I work in Wan Chai near the Fook Lam Moon "tycoon's canteen" restaurant.

The two, sometimes three, traffic wardens outside the restaurant do a good job to keep that 50-metre stretch of road clear, but they refuse to address the greater problem of the tycoon-movers who park illegally anywhere and everywhere beyond the sight of traffic wardens and thus still block all the through traffic.

When I have stopped passing foot patrol policemen to book illegally parked tycoon-mover cars which are blocking traffic - at least those stopped on double yellow lines - they have flatly refused to get involved. "Not our job" they say. "That's the job of the traffic wardens and the traffic police."

I also see that every day Hennessy Road eastbound is reduced to from three to one lane by double parking around Wan Chai MTR station because the kerbside lane is fully occupied by illegally parked private cars and promotional vans, forcing China Travel Service coaches, minibuses and taxis to stop in the middle lane.

When I recently asked a passing foot patrol policeman why he didn't take any action, he replied: "We only do something when the traffic conditions require so," after which he did precisely nothing.

Not a single illegally parked car was moved on, let alone booked for "parking in a non-authorised place".

My conclusion is that illegal parking is not a matter for foot patrol policemen. So that's apparently "the standard" and we can all park in "non-authorised spaces" as long as there are no traffic wardens or traffic police around.

Except that, last month, I was enjoying Christmas lunch in Gough Street with several other diners, all of whom had neatly parked along one side of this quiet one-way, two-lane street which has no yellow lines and certainly no through traffic.

Then along came two foot patrol policemen who booked every car unless the diners were quick enough to run out and drive away. Was it because the cars were obviously not tycoon-movers, or did the "standard" suddenly change on Christmas Day?

That's what I call double standards.

Are tycoon-movers on business days off-limits for foot patrol policemen but normal citizens on other days are "fair game"?

Is this a case for the Ombudsman or at least a test court case on the grounds of inconsistent police enforcement policy?

Peter Bentley, Mid-Levels