David Hands, a 64-year-old retired Rover worker from Northfield in Birmingham, suffered an angina attack while driving through the city. He pulled over and went into an amusement arcade nearby to take his medication, but when he returned, he discovered that he had been given a parking ticket. He appealed, and sent a doctors' letter, but the council responded by increasing the fine.
David had already suffered four heart attacks in the past, and had been advised by his doctor that if he ever suffered chest pains, he should stop what he was doing immediately, take his medication, and rest. He followed this advice to the letter, and received a £35 fine for his trouble.
He appealed the fine, enclosing a note from his doctor explaining the circumstances, but the council rejected his appeal. Because it had taken a while to get hold of a letter and send it off, the council also increased the fine to £70.
Hands told the Daily Mail it was a disgrace that he should be fined for taking the only safe option - as there was no way he could drive safely while suffering agonising chest pains. He said that his first appeal had been rejected, but he wasn't giving up, and was taking it to a second independent appeal. He added: "It is the principle, it is not about the money. If I win the appeal, the £70 will go to the cardiac resuscitation charity." The Express reported that the council accepted the second appeal and cancelled the fine.
It's not the first time a traffic warden or council staff member has made an astonishing decision over a parking ticket. Here are five of the worst in recent years.
1. We reported last November on the woman who had pulled over at 11am on Armistice Day to pay her respects, after hearing Big Ben strike. While she was standing by the car, observing a minute's silence, a traffic warden slapped her car with a ticket. The council told the press that they could use their discretion, and urged the woman to get in touch.
2. In February last year, a Bradford motorist was ticketed for being stationary beside a bus stop: he was stuck in traffic at the time. The fine was later cancelled.
3. A month later, a man in Bristol was fined for stopping for 90 seconds to check the parking restrictions. The photo sent with the fine clearly showed him checking the sign beside his car. The fine was eventually dropped.
4. In 2013, a woman from Mussleburgh was fined for pulling into a disabled bay on Portobello High Street. The warden ignored the fact she was a few feet away giving first aid to a woman who had collapsed in the street. The council withdrew the fine.
5. And a year earlier, Devon traffic wardens ticketed a lifeboat, after a crew member left it on a trailer outside the lifeboat station to pop back in for some paperwork. The ticket was eventually cancelled.