Staff working at the Western General Hospital in Scotland are furious after vandals caused damage to a number of cars while their owners were busy tending the sick. The damage comes as residents who live close to the hospital have complained that staff are parking on their streets.
Residents are angry that staff are taking their parking places outside their homes and in some cases they are blocking drive-ways making it impossible to get in or out. Hospital workers claim they are being prevented from parking at the hospital itself and while there is no evidence that local residents are responsible for the damage, it has led to tempers rising even further in the dispute that shows no signs of ending. In June, residents hit out at the local council bosses after they failed to paint parking restrictions on their streets that would have prevented any hospital staff from using them to park their vehicles. Meanwhile staff, some of whom are now facing an increased car insurance quotes after claiming for the damage done to their vehicles, insist they have no other place to park.
One nurse, who did not want to be named, said “Not so very long ago the Western General Hospital had a two-storey car park built, one level of which, we were assured, would be for staff and the other for patients and visitors. Once the car park was finished, however, the powers-that-be reneged on this promise and removed the right of staff to use it. Staff are therefore forced to park in the nearby residential streets. Staff – myself included – have been met with verbal abuse and hostile behaviour from residents who are angry at the situation.”
Health chiefs opened the new car park at the hospital in February last year and hoped it would ease congestion. The number of complaints about available spaces has increased since hospital parking charges were scrapped two years ago. The hospital say they have a green transport policy and they encourage members of staff to use greener methods of getting to work, such as car sharing, public transport or cycling to work. Any staff that have no option but to drive to work are given staff parking permits which will ensure that essential vehicle users are able to park at the hospital.