As Kentucky fans make their way to Columbia, SC to see the Wildcats take on the South Carolina Gamecocks, the school is urging visitors to double-check before parking around Williams-Brice Stadium.
According to WIS News in South Carolina, there is a parking scam in the area where visitors are flagged into private lots by unofficial parking attendants and charged $20, only to return to find their vehicles have been towed.
The report says there are signs indicating these lots are private property and warns drivers of the possibility of being towed, though individuals wearing neon security vests with flags and poster board signs are convincing the visiting fans that the signs don’t apply during the game. After handing over the $20 initially, they are forced to pay a whopping $225 towing fee to get their car back after the game.
“When we pulled into this lot, the lady flagged us in, $20 and it seemed reasonable,” South Carolina fan David Ziegler explained to WIS News. “It’s how we’ve done it before so nothing seemed strange about it, she was even joking around with us. … She looked official — she had the vest, she had the flags, she had her poster board sign, which is by standards of every other parking spot what makes it official.”
According to the report, surveillance video from a nearby business showed a woman arrive at the private lot in the hours leading up to kickoff, took money until all the spaces were full, and then disappeared.
Business owners along Shop Road and Bluff Road near Williams-Brice Stadium are strongly encouraging fans to avoid lots with “No Parking” signs or anything else indicating your car may be towed, regardless of what the lot attendant says.