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Parking madness at airport

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

I wish the Airport’s Authority and the police service can take corrective action on the following serious and embarrassing matters.

Friday I had to pick up some people at the airport (Piarco). To my surprise, the area that was to be the waiting area to park temporarily, was blocked off. I can’t say for sure if it ever was but there are billboards saying to use such place.

Where do they want people to park then? The obvious answer is the official car park. However, there is an electronic sign stating the number of vacant parking spots inside the official car park. It said zero for VIP, general and one other category. Where then do people park? I eventually ventured into the car park still and could not find a park, so I exited after about five minutes.

I saw signs along the roadway when entering the airport that “wrecking is in progress” and no stopping on the “shoulder”. Where are people to park?

I also saw officers issuing tickets to people who were temporarily parked in the shoulder. Can not the officers exercise some discretion in such instances or do they blindly implement the law?

We all know that such persons broke the law but where are they to park especially in the busy Carnival season when hundreds and thousands of visitors are coming into the country? I am sure the situation is the same for Christmas time.

Then, further away from the airport itself where TT Post is, some people were parking on the shoulder; not on the road. This is illegal too. I saw where they were being hounded off by the same security officers.

Where are we to park then? Where are the discretionary powers of the police?

Also, in the official car park, there is only one cashier booth functioning for all vehicles exiting. Again, in this busy Carnival period, with a full car park, why only one booth? This is grossly inefficient and shameful; that’s why some international person recently referred to T&T as Third World and we want to fuss about that. We can’t even get a simple car park issue in our one “2x4” airport right. I am sure those persons who parked on the shoulder would have paid a fee to park in a waiting area because the official car park had no space.

I also saw vehicles making the rounds, circling the airport as there was no way to park. This definitely contributed to the utter traffic and chaos closer to the drop off and pick up areas. Why all of these inefficiencies?

I am wondering if someone was to challenge the ticket in court, if the Arima Magistrate would understand the situation or stick to the law? My guess is that we haven’t developed to that level of understanding as yet. Or, we may get surprised one day that someone will be bold enough to stand up for the ordinary man/woman! They may just get our votes when election comes around.



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