Breaking news – new powers for councils to tackle pavement parking?

21 Feb

No pavement parking signage (as published in The Sun)

The Sun has reported in today’s paper that the Transport Minister Norman Baker is about to announce a ‘nationwide blitz on motorists who selfishly force pushchair mums into the road’.

He will evidently be writing to all council chiefs today to inform them of their new powers which allow them to create traffic regulation orders covering local pavement parking blackspots. After installing warning signs they will be able to fine those who park on or partly on the pavement £70. More details will no doubty follow soon.

I have selected a range of supportive and opposing comments from The Sun’s website which I have reproduced verbatim. Clearly there is considerable support for getting cars off pavements and also a vocal group of more ‘extreme motorists’ who will fight this tooth and nail.

Supportive:

  • I am in a wheelchair and live on a road used by drivers to park like that for the day and buddy up to go into town. There are no dropped curbs near these idiots so I often have to travel several hundred yards on the road which is a major bus route
  • Good. I am sick and tired of having to squeeze past cars parked like that. Trouble is though will there be anyone to give out the fines? Secondly will anyone of the selfish drivers pay? I doubt it.
  • Get a fleet of tow trucks and haul their cars away for a week that will make them think twice about being so inconsiderate.
  • We in Basingstoke, have a second hand car dealer, right on a set of busy traffic lights, he has NO customer parking, so they park on the pavement, which not only makes people have to walk in the road, but causes mayhem at peak times, so I welcome these rules.
  • Parking on the pavement is NEVER an option.  Indeed, being allowed to park on the road at all is a privilege.  There was a 17th century High Court judge who ruled that “the highway shall not be used as a stable”.  That ruling is still in force today.
  • I think its a good idea, though it does point out its not a blanket ban as sometimes people need to park that way, and don’t block pavements. As a mother I’m sick of having to go round cars selfishly parked on the path. It’s not right.
  • Some of you need to remember, pavements are for people, not cars. That’s what roads are for, so good on him for finally doing something.
  • About time too. There are no acceptable excuses for parking on pavements. If the road is too narrow to allow other vehicles to pass with vehicles parked on a pavement, that is an indication that vehicles should not be parked in that road not that vehicles should be parked on the pavement. Why do motorists consider pedestrians to be second class citizens? The rights of a pedestrian to walk along a pavement are just as important as the right of a motorist to drive along a road.

Opposing

  • traffic waldon’s are filth
  • MOTORIST`S HAVE NO CHOICE – A LOT OF ROAD`S ARE TOO NARROW FOR TWO WAY TRAFFIC TO FLOW AND THEN HAVE CARS FULLY PARKED ON THE ROAD.
  • TRANSPORT MINISTER BAKER SHOULD BE FINING COUNCILS FOR NOT DEALING WITH POT HOLES.
  • Wahay. Another way to rip off motorists. Can I set up a direct debit to have all my motoring fines each month paid straight to the exchequor?
  • Are they gonna widen the roads then? the only reason to park on the pavement like that is because the road is too narrow to park on normally, without risk of having your car side swiped. how does this also “force” buggy pushing mothers into the road?
  • This is just another of what will be an ever increasing methods the government will use to extract money from us the hard working public. The at the same time after taking massive taxes and spurious fines then have the cheek to tell us that we need.
  • I’d rather force a mother into the road, where she can stop, look, listen and navigate carefully than park my car obstructively in the road.
  • Will they make extra spaces in places where they have to enforce such rulings? like hell they will, they’ll just coin it in whenever someone gets sick of the inconvenience of parking half a mile down the road
  • I don’t even know where to begin with this, this is open to so much abuse it is ridiculous.  Wide vehicles regularly MUST park partially on the pavement to prevent endangering motorists on narrow roads, or even blocking them completely.

Update

Today’s government press release on the subject.

“The Department for Transport has given all councils in England permission to use signs to indicate a local pavement parking ban. Until now councils have had to gain special signs authorisation from Government each time they want to put a pavement parking ban in place.

In the press release Norman Baker clearly states that the regulations are aimed at a ‘selfish minority’ who ‘dump their cars wherever it suits them without a second thought for others’. Good stuff!

9 Responses to “Breaking news – new powers for councils to tackle pavement parking?”

  1. Graham Martin-Royle February 21, 2011 at 10:32 am #

    About bloody time! We really have to change the mindset of drivers who have a kneejerk reaction when it comes to parking on pavements.

  2. ian... February 21, 2011 at 12:26 pm #

    Better late than never.

    If this had been done years ago, even without the threat of a fine, our general motoring culture might not have defaulted to “crap on everybody else’s plate” mode.

    What will be interesting is just how willing or unwilling councils will be to implement these rules, considering how few double yellow lines there are, and how acceptable it has become to double-park in despite of the High Code saying otherwise.

  3. Peter Miller February 21, 2011 at 2:11 pm #

    I agree. There is indeed still a question as to how well this regulation will all be used at a local level. We will need to encourage use of these new powers and ensure that the voice of the pedestrian is heard. There is now a press release on the DfT website relating to the announcement and I have a query with the press office in relation to who will enforce these regulations and what will happen to the fine income. I assume that in places with civil enforcement that it will be council that will receive the fine income for operation of the scheme and transport generally. In other areas I would guess it would be the exchequer who would get it.

    Press release…
    http://nds.coi.gov.uk/content/Detail.aspx?NewsAreaID=2&ReleaseID=418175

  4. Graham Martin-Royle February 21, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    @Ian
    I fully agree, if this had been enforced from the earliest days of motoring then drivers would not now be in the habit of parking like this. It will take a huge effort of will to change the habits of a lifetime.
    @Peter
    I hope this isn’t going to be something that only the police can enforce as they have the powers to do so at the moment but will not use those powers. I am also wary about enforcement only being applied where these signs go up, pavement parking should be illegal everywhere unless it is specifically allowed and not the other war around.

    • Peter Miller February 21, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

      The have just spoken with the DfT. In areas which have opted for civil enforcement then it will be the council that enforce it and get to keep the fines which will pay pay for the enforcement. Agreed it should be banned everywhere, but this is a good step forward. I am particularly pleased by the number of Sun readers who support the move.

    • ian... February 21, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

      pavement parking should be illegal everywhere unless it is specifically allowed and not the other war around.

      Agree with you here Graham – the default is the wrong way round. As Peter says though, a move in the right direction & encouraging that it’s generated more support than flak!

      (and isn’t it funny how some of those opposed feel it necessary to reply in CAPITAL LETTERS??? Wonder if they shout a lot in real life lol)

  5. Mike Coles February 24, 2011 at 7:55 pm #

    Hi, you perhaps remeber I posted a classic piece of parking[Hedgehogging] and was having trouble getting the PCSO’s to admit this was a FPN.Well after letters to the Chief Constable,letters from my MP to the Chief Contable they have finally agreed they were wrong.Not only that they have just completed a survey amongst residents and even accepted a poster which I put together to distribute around.So for anyone that may feel defeated that there continuing harresment of anyone who matters doesn’t work then take heed it does pay off in the end.I have already started asking prominant people for a few of those signs[as press release] for our village.
    PS.I have withdrawn the photo as the ownwer of the jeep was getting a little bit frustrated and I don’t want his feathers rumbled too much when he finds out he has to find somewhere else to park his bloody jeep.
    vicmel60

  6. Mike Coles March 4, 2011 at 3:45 pm #

    Hi, in respect of this press release I spoke to our local authorities and they say nothing will change so armed with that I spoke to the department of transport and and basically it is only the permission that local authorities have to obtain from the d/t that is being scrapped.The dept. says this saves about 3 months in timescale.However,it was interesting to hear that the d/t are considering scrapping the TRO system.Now that would be useful because local authorities have always used this as an excuse as being too costly and time consuming to administrate.

  7. Graham Martin-Royle June 3, 2013 at 9:14 am #

    I don’t know about anyone else but I’ve yet to see any action being taken or any improvement in the situation (03/06/2013).

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