19/12/2011 07:02 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Parking Officials Refuse To Scrap Fine Given To Pregnant Mum Needing Emergency Treatment To Save Unborn Baby

Sian Vaughan with baby BNPS

parking officials have refused to scrap a fine given to a pregnant woman while she had emergency treatment to save her unborn baby.

Heavily pregnant Sian Vaughan went to hospital for routine treatment and parked her car on a meter, expecting to return an hour later.

But doctors discovered she was suffering from pre-eclampsia, a condition that could have threatened her baby's life, and so admitted her to hospital.

She stayed there for two days and gave birth to a, thankfully, healthy boy, Ollie, two days later.

But because her car had overstayed the permitted time on the parking meter, Mrs Vaughan was given a £35 parking ticket.

She appealed to the local authority, but was told her circumstances did not justify cancelling the ticket.

"At my appointment I was admitted there and then because my blood pressure was so high that there was a serious risk to me and the baby," said Mrs Vaughan, from Dorchester.

"There was nothing I could do about it, it was such a shock and I was on my own so it was scary.


The last thing I was worrying about was moving my car.


"I knew I was in a restricted area but I thought if I explained the situation to the council they would understand.

"I'm not saying I didn't do anything wrong but all I want is a bit of humanity. Do they really think I would put my baby's life at risk to go out and move my car?"

Mrs Vaughan, who has two other sons, later emailed the council to appeal the ticket which was issued outside the Dorset County Hospital in Dorchester.

The council's reply said: ''We do appreciate and understand your circumstances but unfortunately hospital appointments can overrun. We have considered your case and are satisfied that the ticket was administered correctly."

"The thing they don't seem to understand is my appointment didn't just overrun, it was a medical emergency," said Mrs Vaughan.


I had developed a condition called pre-eclampsia, and it can kill. I was being monitored because it was life threatening to me and my baby.


A Dorset County Council spokesman told the Daily Mail: "The parking ticket was challenged through our website and, though we are sympathetic to the circumstances, we felt that the details given weren't sufficient to justify cancelling the ticket.

"The ticket can still be challenged through official means as described on the back of the penalty charge notice."

Update 19th December:

We have been contacted by Dorset County Council who have given us the following statement on this story:

Mrs V contacted the parking services department to challenge the penalty charge notice (PCN), but the information initially provided was insufficient to justify rescinding the PCN.

Since that time Mrs V has contacted us again in writing, providing more information about her situation and we contacted her directly to discuss further.

Following a detailed conversation and full disclosure of the circumstances we were able to agree that the situation warranted cancellation of the PCN.

We apologised to Mrs V for any distress caused during the process but are satisfied that the matter is now resolved.