Executive Hire News › Archives › November/December 2019 › In the Spirit of Crosshire : Careful where you park!
In the Spirit of Crosshire : Careful where you park!
Everything was going well for Rental Rate Roy concerning a particular weekend hire, until some letters arrived in the post shortly afterwards.
Well, hire industry chums, you will have previously read that I’m not overly enamoured of our local university and their lack of support for the local economy or environment. So you may be interested in a little tale that occurred recently and which, to be frank, had my gander more than up.
Our hire office took an order for a weekend hire of a boom lift from a good customer who is a cleaning contractor. He had been honoured with the contract to clean the soffits and fascias of a couple of the university’s buildings and, unlike that exalted seat of learning, he wished to use a local supplier.
We duly obliged and delivered the machine at the car park to the side of the building on a Friday afternoon for the hire to commence at 7am on the Saturday morning. Luckily for us (or so we thought), the Sunday aspect was completely rained off, meaning that the job could not be completed, so it was rebooked for the following weekend.
Like the diligent little hire monkeys we are, we delivered the machine to exactly the same car park at the allotted time the following Friday as agreed. On this occasion, the British weather did not intervene and the task was successfully completed.
Win-win for all concerned, we thought. A happy customer, a double hire for us…what more could we ask for? The job was subsequently invoiced and all was well with the world.
However, the post some ten days later managed to rain on our parade as we received FOUR identical envelopes ALL with parking tickets for the two deliveries and two collections to the car park we used for the hire. We questioned our customer who knew nothing of it and he suggested we contact the grown-ups at the university to explain the situation. They would surely rescind the fines as it was a genuine error on their behalf.
Subsequently, our hire office set about explaining the situation and suggested that we were not in fact parked, but just dropping off and collecting machines for their benefit - the duration of each visit being no more than ten minutes. After much toing and froing, I decided to take matters into
my own hands, and so I met with the head of security for the university.
I arrived at the allotted meeting point to be met by a surly ex-army type who introduced himself by his surname only. He had a face that could best be described as being akin to a blind cobbler’s thumb with a demeanour to match. After an hour of endeavouring to use my charm and snake oil to get the fines waived, and clearly explaining that there was no alternative place for our driver to park unless he did so illegally and in a dangerous position on The Queen’s Highway, I came away somewhat red faced and angry. I was told that the charges stood and, were they to go unpaid, then the university’s rules allowed them to double the fines accordingly!
So, whatever money we made on the hire has largely been wiped-out by four £38 fines, which would have obviously increased to £76 each if they had not been settled within 14 days. Sadly, we had no alternative. We have been basically stitched-up by sharp practice. A harsh lesson, but it’s all part of the learning curve I guess.
Rental Rate Roy