Washington D.C. added insult to injury during the worst snowstorm to hit the Capitol area in decades via parking tickets and citations to drivers with nowhere to put their cars. As the snow piled up so did the parking tickets to the tune of $1 million-plus dollars. One driver, Danielle Smith, was given a ticket for $230 for being snowed in. She couldn’t get her car out and there was no help to be found, but yet she has to pay a hefty ticket, or does she?
According to DB Techno News on January 28, “the storm was easily ranked among the regions five worst,” they cited this loose statistic via a meteorologist on local news. The doling out of citations is not over as apparently parking tickets are still underway today for cars that are in the way. It has been days since the storm hit, so this is a bit more understandable.
Most drivers couldn’t move their cars from the emergency routes during the storm and for a few days after because of the amount of snow this storm dumped. D.C Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a statement Tuesday that cars parked more than 12 inches from a curb will risk a ticket, regardless if a snowbank won’t allow you to get that close.
It is not known if all this negative press surrounding the perils of D.C. drivers got to the powers that be, but according to USA 9, local CBS News today, Mayor Bowser announced Thursday that Washington D.C. is showing a little forgiveness by voiding the citations issued on Friday for the folks who parked on snow emergency routes. Needless to say people who got these tickets were not happy and their comments on social media reflected this during the storm. Today some of these drivers have a reason to rejoice as “thousands of tickets” are now null and void!
Are they saving face by voiding all citations issued on Friday, January 22, or have they actually seen the error of their ways? The mayor said that those who paid the tickets or citations already will be reimbursed. There really was no place for these drivers to put their cars even if they were one of the very lucky few able to get to their vehicles.
Since the blizzard hit the D.C. area last week, the District has racked up $1,078,000 worth of parking tickets and $65,600 in fines. They’ve also towed 656 cars and the tickets, citations and towing is not over. DB Techno reports, “Vehicles are being towed at the owners’ expense. Violators face $250 tickets, $100 tow charges and a $25-per-day fee until they pick up their vehicles.
The Mayor released statement on Thursday that offered a softer and friendlier tone to the drivers hit with these tickets. Mayor Bowser said:
“The Blizzard of 2016 was one of the largest snow events in recent history and we are all working together to dig the District out from this storm,” said Mayor Bowser. “Despite that drivers were advised last Thursday to remove their vehicles from snow routes, I understand that some who received citations that Friday may not have known about the parking restriction, or may have been running errands in preparation for the storm. This ticket dismissal is one small way that we can continue to help each other recover from the storm.”