Carer caught by car clampers as she helps disabled five-year-old

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A carer had her car clamped as she tried to help a severely disabled girl into her vehicle.

Hannah Pilka picks up five-year-old Harriet Phillips when she is dropped off by the school bus outside the girl's home at Gunwharf Quays.

Miss Pilka had parked behind the bus and left her car briefly to help set up a disabled ramp.

But when she returned she found her car had been clamped by an employee of Waterlooville-based firm, Shoal Enforcement, and would have to pay 200 to have it released.

'I explained why I was there but he just didn't want to know,' she said.

'I was sat in my car waiting, and when the bus arrived I got out to help.

'My car was parked right next to the bus, so it would have been impossible not to see what I was doing.

'In fact because I was only out for such a short time I think he must have been waiting for me.

'There is nowhere to pick up and drop off there, and Harriet's condition means she can't cope with the cold for very long.'

Harriet suffers from a rare neurological disorder called Rett syndrome, which confines her to a wheelchair.

She goes to Mary Rose School in Milton and is regularly picked up by Miss Pilka.

Miss Pilka, of Ripon Gardens, Waterlooville, said the Gunwharf security guard even came over to try to change the clamper's mind.

She said: 'Everyone knows us here, and they know what I'm doing.

I was begging him to let us go. Even Harriet's mum came down to try and change his mind but it didn't work. I don't understand how anyone could be that heartless.'

The managing director of Shoal, Mike Eames, said Miss Pilka's car was parked in a clearly marked private bay, and she should have used one of the nearby pay-and-display car parks.

He said: 'Miss Pilka's vehicle was not displaying any kind of disabled badge or disabled tax disc. She had no legal right to park or use this bay to collect or drop off.'