Bank holiday motorists beware - clampers will be out there in force, and it may cost you an arm and a leg to get your car out of their clutches, the RAC Foundation has warned.
It reports that least 1.2 million drivers have already had their cars clamped on private land, and have had to pay anything up to £500 to get them back.
Even if clampers had followed British Parking Association guidelines and charged a maximum £125 release fee, they would have raked in £150 million.
And says foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister: "While most private parking companies are reputable, some are not. We regularly hear from people who are at their wits' end after they have had their cars clamped and removed, and then been charged an extortionate fee to get them back.
"At the moment there is no independent appeals system for those who have been clamped on private land. And the only industry code of conduct, which is voluntary, is drawn up by the British Parking Association whose members include private clampers. Both these things need to change urgently."
© Press Association 2009