Heart attack victim handed fine for parking while being treated by medics
A man was fuming after being handed a parking fine as he lay in an ambulance being treated for a suspected heart attack.
The motorist was receiving emergency treatment in the ambulance as his car was parked next to it.
Graham Lewis, 49, was handed a fixed penalty notice while being tended to by paramedics.
Mr Lewis was forced to emergency stop his vehicle after developing pains under his arms as he drove home.
He had been told to stop his car as soon as possible by an NHS 111 call handler.
Graham pulled up at the nearest car park where he was told by operators he could not drive any further and had to wait for an ambulance to arrive.
Paramedics ran an ECG to check his heart before one of the NHS staff told him that a parking fine had been placed on his windscreen while he was being treated.
Graham said the discovery of the ticket sent his blood pressure "through the roof" before he was taken to Hereford County Hospital as a precaution.
Graham, of Leominster. Herefordshire, said: "The ambulance came and got me in the back and they'd done the ECG and a few other tests.
"I was trying to phone the other half to say I had to go to hospital as she didn't know what was going on.
"I couldn't get hold of her in the ambulance so I stepped outside and as I'm on the phone the ambulance lady turns around and said I'd got a ticket.
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"Rightfully enough there was a ticket on my screen.
"The ambulance was parked across the corner of the vehicle, there's no way they couldn't see the ambulance."
Graham, who had not had a heart attack, argued the parking warden should have checked the ambulance or used common sense before issuing the fine on August 31.
The window engineer added: "I nearly passed out because I was that stressed in the ambulance.
"Then my blood pressure went through the roof pure and simply because I'd seen a ticket on my car.
"I'm just not impressed by the ticket people just going around slapping tickets on vehicles – it's ridiculous."
A spokesperson for Herefordshire Council said: "Our parking enforcement officers saw no indication that the driver of this vehicle was inside the nearby ambulance, which had no lights on and its doors closed.
"It would not be appropriate for an officer to knock on an ambulance door and potentially interrupt medical professionals.
"Cases such as these are the reason there is an appeals process in place, and we encourage anybody who has received a penalty charge notice as a result of a medical emergency to contact us through the appeals process."
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