Pavement parking ban nears as inquiry opensMon, 15/04/2019
The Government is considering a country-wide ban for parking on the pavements, alongside fines of over £100 for motorists who choose to flout these new laws.
Luke John Smith, The Express, reports:
Pavement parking could be nearing towards a nationwide ban as a national inquiry has opened.
The Government is seeking to address the issue of pavement parking as it “risks the safety of all groups of people from the littlest to the oldest”.
Following an online call is for written evidence, the Transport Select Committee has opened the inquiry which could see all drivers banned from parking on the pavement.
Cars parked on the pavement can cause problems for a number of vulnerable groups including wheelchair users, parents with pushchairs and blind people.
It will be illegal to park your car on the pavement if the new laws are implemented nationwide. If the new laws are passed drivers could be fined up to £130 if they are caught parking flouting the rules.
Labour MP Lilian Greenwood, who chairs the committee, said: "This is an area where some people's actions cause real difficulties for others.
"Parking on pavements risks the safety of all groups of people from the littlest to the oldest, with differing needs.
"We want to hear from the public about the difficulties this presents and the solutions on offer."
Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy, said that a blanket ban may not be the best solution.
He said: "There are instances, particularly on Britain's many narrow residential streets, where drivers believe they are doing the right thing by putting a wheel or two on the kerb so as not to impede road access for other vehicles and emergency services, while also making sure they leave enough space for people to use the pavement, especially wheelchair users and those with buggies.
"This inquiry should look carefully at how we can strike the right balance."
AA president Edmund King echoes this sentiment saying: "A street-by-street assessment is needed to decide where it may be suitable to allow pavement parking.
"Where pavement parking is allowed, seven out of 10 drivers say the bays should be marked out to show how much of the pavement can be used.
"Pavement parking poses problems on both inner-city streets and rural lanes, so the outcome needs to be tailored to the circumstances."
Current pavement parking laws only restrict motorists in London from parking on the pavement.
Rule 274 of the Highway Code said: “You MUST NOT park partially or wholly on the pavement in London, and should not do so elsewhere unless signs permit it.
“Parking on the pavement can obstruct and seriously inconvenience pedestrians, people in wheelchairs or with visual impairments and people with prams or pushchairs.”
The use of the advisory terms “should not” for places outside of London means that drivers won’t necessarily be fined for parking on the pavement.
The revelation of this inquiry highlights how parking on the pavement can affect many groups of people, but the concept of a national ban seems one that would require substantial investment in order to raise awareness of these new laws.