Handicapped Person Endangered due to Tourist Trap
Posted in the Belmar Forum
#1 Jul 3, 2017
I am writing to inform you about a terrible experience I had in Belmar on July 2, 2017. Let me preface this by stating that my family has been visiting Belmar for over twenty years. It is only an hour away from our home and we enjoy your town immensely. We buy seasonal beach tags and patronize your shops and restaurants on a regular basis.
Yesterday, I took my brother (who is mentally handicapped) to Belmar. I am his guardian and thought it would be nice to spend the day at the beach. Apparently there is a well known "tourist trap” at 6th and D St where cars are often towed due to confusing signage. There are white bracketed parking lines on the street which leads one to believe there is legal parking but there are also signs that state, "No Parking To Away Zone" . As stated, I am very familiar with the parking situation in Belmar, especially on a holiday weekend so I arrived early enough to obtain a parking spot. When you are frantically looking for legal spot in which to park, your entire focus is looking for a space between those white bracketed lines (not looking around again for a parking sign). Obviously, I parked there and was ticketed ( citation # 009121) and towed. In the two hours it took me to Uber over to the tow lot, my poor brother had to bake in the July sun unexpectedly. The police officer who gave us contact information for the tow lot, saw that we had a mentally handicapped person in our care who was is distress, but did NOT offer any assistance whatsoever. My brother became disoriented and dehydrated and we saw the need to take him to the Emergency Department once we arrive home. Intravenous fluids are the course of therapy for dehydration. Thankful he responded to our rehydration efforts.
It is certainly obvious to me that there is a potentially dangerous situation brewing here. The police officer on the beach, the dispatcher who I spoke to last night, the tow truck operator and a resident on D-street ALL CONFIRMED that is an EXTREMELY common occurrence in this particular section of Belmar. I cannot think of any other reason that is has not been corrected (ie...removing the bracketed white lines or simply painting NO PARKING on the street), other than for monetary gain. In my experience, decisions that made solely for monetary gain are doomed to be bad ones. If this is indeed the case and my brother had experienced a more serious reaction due to his dehydration (seizure, stroke, cardiac arrest, death), the city of Belmar could and should be held liable.
I thought you should be informed of this situation if you are not already aware.
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