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Sauce For Goose Not Sauce For Gander

It is not possibly fully perceived by residents of this State, but ‘surprise’, ‘surprise’ my friends, but any person who parks a car on any roadside,, with a ‘For Sale’ sign plastered across its windows and bearing a mobile phone number with which to contact the seller, can in fact be fined and / or have the offending vehicle impounded.

Such ‘For Sale’ vans, lorry’s and other vehicles parked regularly on our roadsides are seen as a distraction to other passing drivers (under Section 71 of the Roads Act 1993) and Gardaí are in fact duty bound, to seize all such vehicles, under the aforementioned legislation.

Section 71 of the Roads Act 1993 Reads:-

VW Beetle For Sale !

71.—(1) (a) Any person who, without lawful authority or the consent of a road authority—
(i) erects, places or retains a sign on a public road, or
(ii) erects, places or retains on a public road any caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing (whether on wheels or not) used for the purposes of advertising, the sale of goods, the provision of services or other similar purpose, shall be guilty of an offence.
(b) A consent under paragraph (a) may be given by the road authority subject to such conditions, restrictions or requirements as it thinks fit and any person who fails to comply with such conditions, restrictions or requirements shall be guilty of an offence.

(2) Without prejudice to the liability of any person under subsection (1), where there is a contravention of that subsection in the case of any sign or advertisement, the person on whose behalf the sign or advertisement is exhibited shall be deemed also to have contravened that subsection.

(3) Notwithstanding any other enactment, an authorised person may remove a sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing to which subsection (1) applies.

(4) An authorised person may store, or procure the storage of, a sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing removed by him under subsection (3).

(5) Where the name and address of the owner of a sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing removed and stored under this section can be ascertained by reasonable inquiry, the road authority or the Commissioner shall serve a notice upon the owner informing him of its removal and storage and of the address of the place where it may be claimed and recovered, requiring him to claim and recover it within one month of the date of the service of the notice and informing him of the statutory consequences of his failure to do so.

(6) A sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing removed and stored under this section shall be given to a person claiming it if, but only if, he makes a declaration in writing that he is the owner of the sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing or is authorised by its owner to claim it and, at the discretion of the road authority concerned or the Commissioner, pays the amount of the expenditure reasonably incurred in removing and storing it.

(7) The road authority concerned or the Commissioner may dispose, or procure the disposal, of a sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing removed and stored under this section if—
(a) the owner of the sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing fails to claim it and remove it from the place where it is stored within one month of the date on which a notice under subsection (5) was served on him, or
(b) the name and address of the owner of the sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing cannot be ascertained by reasonable inquiry.

(8) A sign, caravan, vehicle or other structure or thing shall not be disposed of under this section within six weeks of the date of its removal under this section.

(9) In this section – “authorised person” means:-
(a) a person authorised in writing by a road authority for the purposes of this section,
(b) a member of An Garda Síochána.
In this section – “sign” means:-
Any sign, hoarding or other structure used for the purposes of advertising.

(10) This section shall not apply to a sign which relates to a presidential election within the meaning of the Presidential Elections Act, 1937 , a general election or a bye-election, within the meaning, in each case, of the Electoral Act, 1923 , a local election, a referendum, within the meaning of the Referendum Act, 1942 , or an election of members of the European Parliament, unless the sign has been in position for seven days or longer after the latest day upon which the poll was taken for the election, bye-election or referendum concerned.

Now you can see why General Election and other Political Posters are permitted to take precedence over the ‘Health & Safety’ issues affecting already over taxed motorists; with giant posters often placed blocking roundabouts, long before and up to seven days after an election has taken place.
It would appear that “What’s sauce for the goose is not necessarily always sauce for the gander” after all
.

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