§ 1. Mr. Cronin
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department under what circumstances the Metropolitan Police now remove vehicles from the street without the permission of the owners.
§ The Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. Dick Taverne)
Those set out in the Removal and Disposal of Vehicles Regulations, 1968, which authorises a constable to remove a vehicle which is causing obstruction or is likely to cause danger or is contravening a statutory prohibition or appears to have been abandoned without lawful authority.
§ Mr. Cronin
As it is now, and has been for some time, possible for police officers to impose summary fines at the time of the parking infringement, could my hon. and learned Friend assure us that in future the removal of cars will be confined to cases of actual physical obstruction or impedence of travel?
§ Mr. Taverne
Certainly the main reason why cars are removed is to ease the flow of traffic. If my hon. Friend has some cases in mind of unjustified removals of cars, I hope that he will let me know.
§ Mr. Lipton
Is my hon. and learned Friend aware that my car was towed away from a certain spot in the West End some months ago, on which every night since other cars have been parked with complete impunity?
§ Mr. Taverne
No, Sir, I was not aware of that, but whether or not a particular car is towed away may well depend on the traffic conditions at the time.