Inside the secret life of a traffic warden: what streets are targeted and the truth if they get paid commission on fines | The Sun

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A traffic warden has busted some of the big myths and rumours around his job, including where they target most.

Motorists hate Greg Austin, who enforces parking restrictions in Maidstone, Kent – but he insists that he loves his work.

Greg, 58, works for APCOA, the company which runs parking enforcement for Maidstone Borough Council.

He told The I that civil enforcement officers, as they are officially called, tend to target busier areas and peak times.

He said: "What we do is go around city centres, and the streets with double yellow lines, and move on those people who have parked where they shouldn’t, especially if they’re impeding the emergency services."

Greg added that weekends are often busier because more people are out shopping, but it really depends on the day.

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He insisted that there is a lot of confusion over what traffic wardens are aiming to do.

"There’s an age-old myth that civil enforcement officers just give out as many parking tickets as possible, but that’s simply not true. Our role is to keep the traffic moving; a penalty charge is actually the last resort.

"For civil enforcement officers, it’s never a question about how many tickets we give per day. There are no targets, and we’re certainly not paid on the amount we give out."

Unpopularity comes with the job as a parking warden and Greg is no stranger to verbal, or even physical, abuse.

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For example, he often gets insults hurled at him from passing cars or people who have got tickets.

He said that while most insults go "over my head", he added: "I do hate – and any officer will tell you this – when people say that they hope we get cancer, and they hope we die. That gets to you. It’s not nice, is it? You shouldn’t wish that on anyone."

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Despite the hate he gets, though, he insisted that he loves his job, saying: "I’ll be honest: I enjoy the job, and I don’t feel guilty for issuing tickets.

"I always say that a car doesn’t drive itself onto the double yellow line, parking illegally, someone does. And if they then leave that car there, then of course we have to fine them."


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