Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Park at Car Park Operator's Risks

Many Malaysians have experienced having their cars being broke into and stuff being stolen from their cars. What can you do after that? Report police and cry all the way home while driving with a broken window apparently hacked by thieves who broke into your car.

What can you do with that police report? Claim insurance to fix your window?

Can you claim against those car park operators who have a big signboard hanging at the car park entrance telling all car owners that they are going to park at their own risk. So how? Blame yourself for parking at that spot? Blame yourself that of all car parks and you have to choose that car park?

From now onwards, all car owners can park at the car park operator's risks ....... hahahaha. Yes! It's true. A magistrate court in Penang has set a good legal precedent (good for me lah) that a car park operator cannot rely on their big signboard discounting their liabilities, one of which is theft.

In this case between a car owner who has lots items such as compact disc and cassette player with a CD of a compilation of Neil Diamond’s songs, an amplifier, and a pair of Ray-Ban sunglasses.

The car owner stated that he has paid RM2.40 to park at the car park facilitated by Timur Car Park Sdn Bhd ("TCP"). I assume that you have to show the official receipt for that RM2.40. Keep your receipts from today onwards. Throw it after you have driven your car away.

The victim also claimed he parked near a lamppost with 50 to 60 other cars being there at the same time. He also stated that one or two of TCP's workers do patrol the car park on a motorcycle.

TCP argued that they had only provided parking facility and do not provide any security service to ensure that the cars are safe from any theft. Besides that, TCP also said that the victim may have not lock his car / activate the alarm system / failed to ensure that the alarm system and the locks of the car doors were all functioning well.

TCP lost the case anyhow. The victim was awarded RM1,668 and with interest and cost on top of the amount claimed. What a victory! If you are a car park operator cum owner reading this blog post, you better buck up if your car park area is prone to theft.

As for those who still leave their laptops, digital cameras or mobile phones ...... don't know what to say to you if it had been stolen from your cars (presumably in the car boot). Nowadays, the thieves have those battery 'electrical current' detectors and it could detect whether your cars are keeping any of those gadgets at a car park bay located in shopping centre, hotel, condo area or public/private car park.

In this instance, I'm not sure how the court will rule. Maybe you are at fault too. Or the car park operators are now liable for any theft.

Reading: ‘Park at own risk’ sign no shield from liability - Star
Tags: Park At Own Risk, Car Park, Car Park Operator, Car Theft, Timur Car Park Sdn Bhd, Magistrate Court



Blogger sky said...


30 April, 2009 17:57  
Blogger EliteVillain said...

sigh...but when we park on their property and paid for it..shouldn't we get some kind of security? That's the premium we paid for...otherwise we park at the valley...

01 May, 2009 02:43  
Blogger Bengbeng said...

a boost for consumer rights!

03 May, 2009 15:03  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

sky - yeah .... at last

elite - hehehe, there's a case for us to fall on now provided u willing to go thru the legal process

bengbeng - oh yes!

04 May, 2009 13:43  
Blogger acura said...

At last, something in favour of the consumer. Car park operators in major shopping malls are charging exorbitant parking fee, they should ensure the safety of the cars parked inside.

I always find those sign saying 'Park at your own risk' to be incredibly ridiculous.

04 May, 2009 18:23  
Blogger foongpc said...

Finally! But only in Penang? I hope it'll be the same here in KL. I totally disagree with car park operators that say park at your own risk.

The Govt should amend the law making it compulsory for car park operators to be liable for safety of the cars parked in their premises.

07 May, 2009 13:17  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

acura - yeah, collect money yes. security yr problem?

foong - this law case wld set a precedent for whole of m'sia now. the govt is still sleeping on the law u suggested. they will wait for more extreme cases to happen before they do something abt it

18 May, 2009 23:36  

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