Visitors to Alicante may well have seen something that the residents and workers have come accustomed to for many years, but the last working Tuk-Tuk that served the city streets has been retired, after the owner came tired of persistently falling foul of traffic laws.
The owner of the “carromato”, Tomás Buforns Solbes, used the vehicle for providing an economical and environmentally friendlier delivery service though the streets of the provincial capital, as has his family for around a half a century.
However, in the last month alone, Tomás has been slapped with four different tickets for motoring offences, totalling 400 euro in fines.
Although it could easily be argued that there is a justification for the police to issue a ticket for a vehicle that doesn´t have a mandatory ITV certificate, as well as not having the vehicle registered correctly, but Tomás believes that the fact he and his vehicle are providing a “service” justifies the lack of documentation. Similarly, the ticket issued for driving and parking on a pedestrian area was considered unfair by Tomás, on account, once again, of the fact that he was “carrying out a service”.
Suffering sleepless nights on account of the threat of being towed away, as well as the increase risk of watchful traffic cops enforcing the law, are the combinations that have forced Tómas to make the heartbreaking decision to stop operating his service, “I am very nervous and have had several days without sleep”, he said, “The motorcycle police have told me that if I don´t do what they say they will have my vehicle towed away”, continuing, “I already paid two fines and this week I had to pay another 100 euro, Tuesday 2nd have to pay another 100 within twenty days or I have to pay twice”.
Officials from the traffic department have said that they have no intention “eliminating” this urban icon “provided it meets all the regulations”, but as that seems unlikely that Tómas will concede to the fact that the rules apply to all, the last working Tuk-Tuk of Alicante may soon be banished to the history books.
Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/45981/