Parking inspector’s wild confrontation with mum in ritzy suburb divides Aussies

The incident was filmed by a Sydney woman who questioned the ranger about her parking fine, and it speaks to a bigger problem council workers often face.

Parking ranger in an altercation with woman on street in Double Bay, Sydney
A parking inspector was filmed telling a woman to 'leave him alone' before pointing his finger and 'hitting' her phone. Source: Facebook

A heated altercation between a woman and a parking inspector has erupted in one of Sydney's ritziest suburbs, with a young mum accusing the ranger of "physically assaulting her" after he had threatened to call the police over her alleged harassment.

Video footage, filmed by the unidentified woman, was shared on social media by another local with her permission and shows the pair in a confrontation over a parking ticket on Cross St in Sydney's Double Bay, where two-hour parking rules apply.

According to the poster, the woman claims she'd "just parked" her car and was paying for a ticket when the inspector arrived to fine her — but some critics responding to the post, suggest things might not be as they seem.

The Sydney woman claims she "addressed the man" after noticing she was being booked. According to the woman, he was "rude and abrupt," prompting her to whip out her phone to record.

The video starts with the male ranger standing on the footpath appearing to "write notes" on his device, seemingly attempting to ignore the phone in his face. "You're harassing me, I'll call the police," the ranger is seen and heard saying to the woman.

As he turns abruptly pointing a finger toward her, telling her to "leave me alone", he appears to hit the phone. The woman gasps loudly before accusing him of "physically assaulting" her.

"You physically assaulted me. Wow. It's all on camera," the unknown woman says to the ranger as he continues to tell her to "leave me alone". She claims the ranger "pushed her away", saying it was "terrifying".

The video attracted a mixed response from locals who weighed in on the dispute. Some noted the video didn't capture what happened before she started filming, suggesting "there's more to the story". But some called out the ranger, dubbing his behaviour "shocking," regardless of what went down.

"The ranger has no right to assault anyone. And if it was when they were on the job, it’s a sackable offence, if not criminal," one said. While another added, "he’s in trouble, big trouble". Some agreed the woman was out of line for being "up in his face" suggesting she too was in the wrong and that the ranger was "just doing his job".

Cars parking in two-hour parking on Cross Street Double Bay, Sydney.
The incident unfolded on Cross St in Double Bay on Friday, where two-hour parking rules apply. Source: Google Earth

"You can tell he didn't mean to knock the camera, and that she was up in his face," one person commented, adding there are "lots of unanswered questions."

When contacted by Yahoo News Australia, Woollahra Council said it's "aware of the incident" that occurred on Friday — and said it seemingly speaks to an issue parking rangers often face.

"Council regrets any distress experienced during the issuing of a fine due to an illegally parked vehicle," a spokesperson said.

"We understand no one likes receiving a fine, but [we] ask members of the public to refrain from taking out their frustration on Council staff, either verbally or physically."

The council added, that its "regulatory staff are trained to deal with aggressive behaviour and to protect themselves."

In a bid to protect its rangers from ongoing abuse from drivers, another Sydney council recently switched from physical infringements to digital. Despite a backlash, the City of Sydney council believes paperless infringements are in the best interests of parking rangers as it minimises potential confrontations between them and frustrated motorists who cop a fine.

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