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McDonald's diners complain over fines; Drivers issued with parking tickets due to fault.

Byline: TRACY-ANN CARMICHAEL

Disgruntled diners were left counting the cost of McDonald's meals last week after being issued with phantom parking fines.

Scores of fast food fans in Dumfries were hit with penalty charges after a glitch in the system at the popular chain's outlet on Lochside Road.

Drivers who dined at the branch received fine notices after faulty monitoring equipment failed to capture their vehicles leaving the site.

And people who called at the restaurant more than once in a day were worst hit.

Several people took to Facebook to complain. One said: "I've got one too, says I was there for nine hours."

Graham Gillies posted: "Apparently I was there all day, but I was at work.

"Went in the morning for coffee at 8.30, went to work, went back at 18.10 for some kids' meals."

After complaining to the company, he said: "The girl on the phone was nice and said it would be sent to the camera review team as it was obvious that the camera did not pick me up on the day when I left twice."

Unlucky customers were only alerted when tickets generated dropped through letterboxes.

Several people, some of whom were logged as being parked all day, despite only popping in for a coffee, reported the matter to police.

But officers are powerless to act as the tickets are issued by a private parking firm employed by the restaurant.

The tickets fall under the jurisdiction of the civil law of contract and do not constitute a criminal offence.

Dumfries and Galloway Police took to Facebook to flag up the issue, after a number of affected diners took to Loreburn Street Police Office to complain.

They advised anyone affected to contact the restaurant directly and added that McDonald's bosses were: "aware of a fault with the automated system".

A McDonald's spokesman said the parking system, introduced to combat people parking there for long periods without using the restaurant, was switched off after complaints came to light.

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Publication:Dumfries and Galloway Standard (Dumfriesshire, Scotland)
Date:Sep 10, 2019
Words:335
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