Canada Post pays close to $1mn in parking fines

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You have to feel for Canada Post drivers who are forced to navigate congested streets and find legal parking for a few minutes as they get those packages and mail to the right persons. In doing so they’ve ended up racking close to $1 million annually in parking tickets.

Most of these tickets are got in and around Toronto.

“To meet the needs of Canadians, our employees have to routinely park their vehicles,” said Canada Post spokesman Jon Hamilton.

“With the concentration of addresses in urban downtown cores and a rising demand for pickups and deliveries, this can cause challenges, not just for Canada Post but for all delivery companies.”
Data show the Crown corporation has paid out almost $7.5 million in parking fines over the past decade. The worst year was in 2016 with $943,293 paid, slightly more than last year’s $914,831, and almost quadruple the $289,908 recorded in 2009.

Under the federal Canada Post Act, the corporation has, with some exceptions, the “sole and exclusive privilege of collecting, transmitting and delivering letters to the addressee thereof within Canada.” The corporation has a fleet of almost 13,000 vehicles that delivered close to eight billion pieces of mail last year.

Overall, the fines are barely a rounding error for Canada Post, which lost $270 million last year on revenue of $6.6 billion dollars — three-quarters of the corporation’s total revenues. The company initially refused a June 2016 request for the ticket data, citing “commercial sensitivity.”

It relented in June after belated intervention from the information commissioner and released the total value of tickets by region paid from 2009 until mid-2016. Asked for updated figures, the country’s largest retail network insisted on receiving a new formal access-to-information request before providing them.

In general, Canada Post’s drivers are on the hook for traffic violations. However, company policy makes allowance for parking tickets — with an excuse — except in designated accessibility spots.

In an ideal world, postal drivers and other delivery drivers should have designated parking spots for 15 minutes available on all streets, including busy ones. The absence of these spots and the time-sensitive nature of the delivery business makes it impossible for drivers to circle around blocks looking for legitimate parking spots especially in the middle of a weekday. -CINEWS

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