I was slapped with a £100 fine after pulling over to take an emergency call from my sick daughter – it’s wrong | The Sun

A MUM was left fuming after being slapped with a £100 parking fine when she pulled over to take an emergency call from her daughter.

Stephanie Bentley, 36, was forced to pull over in a taxi bay after being contacted by her 13-year-old daughter Rhyannah, who suffers from a debilitating skin condition.

The mum-of-five instantly stopped in the nearest safe place outside Morrisons in order to answer her mobile phone.

But just a few days later, Stephanie was shocked to receive a PCN notice from a parking firm named ES Parking Enforcement Ltd.

It told her that she had to pay £100 within 28 days, or £60 within 14 days.

Stephanie decided to appeal, telling them the circumstances, but has been told she must pay the fine, reports Manchester Evening News.

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The letter from ES Parking Enforcement Ltd, informing her that her appeal has been rejected, states: “Photographic evidence shows you did not park within a marked parking bay.

"There are multiple signs stating vehicles must be parked fully within the confines of a marked parking bay. The terms and conditions of parking at the above site were displayed.”

But the shocked mum says she was "panicking" in the moment and pulled over because you cannot answer the phone while driving.

Stephanie claims she was only parked for "less than a minute".

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She said: “My daughter was having a panic attack and I couldn’t answer – it’s the law to pull over to answer your phone and I did that, and it was literally less than a minute.

"I appealed, but within a couple of days they wrote back and rejected.”

In a later letter, ES Parking Enforcement Ltd stated that she could opt to either pay a reduced fine within 14 days or use the Independent Appeals Service within 21 days, in which case the discount for early payment would be withdrawn and the full charge would apply.

The letter warned her that if she did nothing the company would seek to recover the monies via its debt recovery procedures and could proceed with court action.

Stephanie said that at this point, she chose to pay the reduced fine within 14 days as she could not afford to take the risk.

Rhyannah suffers from dermographism, a rare skin condition meaning she is allergic to touch, as well as severe panic attacks.

Stephanie said she is used to getting phone calls from her daughter's school telling her "she’s not breathing, can you come and get her?".

And the mum has fully defended her decision to stop and answer the phone in what she believed was an emergency.

She said: "At that moment, my priority was to answer the phone to my daughter, and to make sure that she was safe.

"I was stationary and I was following the law, and as quickly as possible.

“I wasn’t causing an obstruction, I wasn’t stopping anyone else on the car park and there wasn’t a taxi waiting to pull in .

"It's wrong on so many levels that there's no phone number or a person that you can speak to and explain the situation; there's just someone at the end of an email clicking on something.

"Are they reading it and understanding what people are saying? It just seemed to be very quickly rejected and it's intimidating and frustrating."

To make matters worse, the mum of five was then stung for the second time a few weeks later when she says she received a £90 fine for allegedly overstaying in a car park.

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Stephanie, who suffers from a rare condition called vasovagal syncope, which causes her to faint, is under the remit of the neurosurgery department at the Royal Preston Hospital.

The letter says she went over the maximum duration of stay with the mum also appealing this fine.

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