The Chief Executive of Roads Service (Dr. Malcolm McKibbin) has written to the hon. Gentleman in response to this question.
Letter from Dr. Malcolm McKibbin, dated 25 January 2007:
You recently asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland a Parliamentary Question pursuant to the Answer of 15th January 2007, Official Report, column 935w, regarding, how many of the newly installed machines were reported as not operating properly in the first month after installation.
As this issue falls within my responsibility as Chief Executive of Roads Service, I have been asked to reply.
As you will be aware, National Car Parks Ltd (NCP) is responsible for managing machine faults and their repair, which normally relate to ticket jams and coin jams. I am advised that in the first month after installation, all 70 new pay and display machines were reported as experiencing faults. This was as a result of a specific unforeseen problem identified with the newly installed machines relating to the ticket paper quality, which resulted in a much greater number of ticket jams than would usually be expected. I understand that NCP trialled a number of different types of ticket paper to resolve this issue and, while doing so, provided a sufficient maintenance resource to deal with these additional faults. These teething problems have since been resolved and the newly installed machines are now operating to a satisfactory level.
I would add that the satisfactory maintenance of pay and display machines is a Key Performance Indicator in our enforcement contract with NCP. NCP performance in this area is being measured against fault response times detailed in the contract and will be continually monitored by Roads Service’s Parking Enforcement Unit.