DIY enforcement

20 Nov

Some fake yellow lines turned up over night at a dangerous junction in Elmswell in Suffolk some time ago when a concerned resident took it upon themselves to tackle a parking problem. The parish clerk said: “The lines appeared on a corner which is incredibly busy and narrow where there had been some rather thoughtless parking”. The markings only came to light around six weeks ago when the parish council applied to create a disabled parking bay on the same side of the street. The parish council want them to stay, the county council say that they are illegal and go.

The legal process to create real ones costs £1,500 and there isn’t any money. Possibly we need a simpler process? Of course there are plenty of regulations about not parking where the vehicle may cause a nuisance or obstruction but the motoring lobby is basically too strong at present for the authorities to dare use them. That is why we need to build a stronger and more vocal ‘pedestrian lobby’.

Incidentally the UK seem to also be pretty keen on fake speed cameras created by local people. A retired policeman in Newbottle, near Houghton-le-Spring, Durham recently installed a fine bird-box in his garden that displayed remarkable similarities to a Gatso speed camera. A device also appeared in Congleton, Cheshire. Indeed their are a veritable rash of these devices across the country. The last month an enterprising resident of Cardiff decorated an ex-police van to look just like a mobile speed detection van and left it in his street.

The good thing is that these interventions do seem slow the traffic down. It is not illegal to install such devices on your own property and the van was legal because it didn’t say anywhere on it that it was a police vehicle. In some ways the rules that came in in 2001 saying that cameras have to be yellow and visible from a distance can be used to advantage.

Again the process of getting real cameras seems very complicated, however at least the macabre rule that only allowed cameras to be installed at locations where 3 people had died or been seriously injured in the last 3 years was removed in 2007. Imagine being told that a village had to wait for another death to get the camera they needed.

A farmer in the USA went as far as to install his own lower speed limit signs for the road and even had the local troopers issuing tickets on the strength of them.

One Response to “DIY enforcement”


  1. Highway robbery? « Pedestrian Liberation - November 25, 2010

    […] the parking wardens and police? What about the legislation regarding the creation of yellow lines (£1,500 a time), installation of all the bollard sand fences needed to physically stop drivers parking on the […]

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