A quick nip to the house, shops or more – tired of searching for a parking? we’ve all done it – parked on the pavement and not left enough room for pedestrians.
As with most things, the capital city seems to have the most clarity on the situation when it comes to pavement parking. The highway code in rule 224 clearly states “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.”
If you’re in London and choose to park on the pavement you could be dealt a £70 fine – but what about in the rest of the UK?
The issue with the law is how it can be interpreted – the ‘should not’ is taken to be meant in an advisory format.
Parking on the pavements can be an inconvenience to pedestrians and especially those who have visual impairments, pushchairs, children or other hand luggage.
A spokesperson for the charity Guide Dogs said: “We need a new nationwide law to end inconsiderate and unnecessary pavement parking.
“Drivers may not always realise, but cars parked on the pavement put people with sight loss and other vulnerable pedestrians in danger.
Imagine being forced to step out into a busy road when you can’t see, and we know the problem can be so bad that people with sight loss simply don’t leave the house to do all the things others take for granted.
We call on the Government make pavement parking a clear offence, except where there is an exemption in place from the local council.”
Drivers could face up to £1,000 fine for causing obstruction, but after that, there are few statistics on further penalties and how likely they are to get one.
Most cases are dealt on a case by case basis.
So what can you do?
When you park your car make sure that there’s enough space for a wheelchair, pram to get through the gap – if there isn’t, make sure you park elsewhere.
Lots of local councils are taking on their own schemes to tackle the pavement parking issues – west Midlands police took to naming and shaming, other areas like kings heath used more creative ideas like putting out ‘car climbing zone’ posters – a method to dissuade motorists from parking on the pavement, unless they wanted people to climb over their car in order to move across the street.