Parking spaces at charging stations are intended for cars that run on electricity. But time and again, they are unnecessarily blocked by both combustion engines and electric cars that are already fully charged. A circumstance that causes a lot of frustration.
Edgar returns from holiday one weekend in November. "My battery still had seven percent, " the 23-year-old recalls, "so I really had to charge, otherwise I wouldn't have come home". After going through the charging options on his app, he heads to the Glacis square, where, according to the current status, there are 32 charging points. "All of them were occupied, mostly by internal combustion vehicles." Art Week was taking place on the weekend in question, so parking on the site was limited because of the event's large marquee. "I just thought to myself, 'This can't be happening' and called the police." The police officers on the phone took the problem seriously, notified the relevant authorities and "within 30 minutes, four tow trucks were on site, " Edgar says. "In the end, there weren't as many cars as I initially indicated, because some drivers had left in the meantime." Nevertheless, he was pleasantly surprised. "I now know that the problem is taken seriously by the police and the municipality and that if a column is blocked, the car can be towed away within half an hour."
Violations to be punished
When asked if the City of Luxembourg could confirm this incident, it said: "For this information, we would suggest you contact the police." During this period, many free parking spaces on Glacis Square had been "blocked by Art Week, the Glacismaart, the Croix Rouge Bazaar, the circus and the Christmas tree sale". Before asking the city, the Lëtzebuerger Journal had already asked the police. The police press office told Journal they "could not confirm this so directly". "We have only come across a report dated 12 November 2022, where the police were notified of two cars that would be parked in parking spaces for electric vehicles in Glacis Square without a permit. However, both cars were gone when police checked them."
Nevertheless, when asked, the City of Luxembourg explains that it had already received corresponding complaints. In the case of violations, the road traffic regulations are adhered to, i.e. for vehicles that are neither electric nor hybrid and are not connected to the charging point, the responsible municipal officials issue a fine ("avertissement taxé"). "In addition, the municipal regulations stipulate that parking in such spaces must be paid for, which is also checked by our officials, " adds the press office of the municipality. There is not much more than this that the City of Luxembourg could do to tackle the problem of blocked charging stations. "Because the parking spaces are paid for and people can take a parking ticket over a certain period of time, it can happen that the charging process has already been completed, but the vehicle remains in that space with a valid parking ticket."
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