Pavement parking is common practise throughout the UK. Drivers who create a hazard by doing this, may sometimes find a ticket stuck to their windscreen; but is it actually against the law?

At the moment, it is if you’re in London or Edinburgh, where you could end up with a £100 fine; but not in other parts of the country.

Currently, councils do not have the powers needed to tackle this problem.

In 2020, a there was a Department for Transport consultation to decide whether to grant local councils the power to deal with the problem. It concluded in November of that year but so far there has been no sign of any announcement.

Why is pavement parking such a problem?

pavement parkingThe first problem with pavement parking is the damage caused to the kerbs and paving slabs. In time, the weight of vehicles driving over them results in breakage and sinking which can be very expensive to repair. Pedestrians could also be at risk from broken up footpaths which become a trip hazard.

The most important aspect however is safety. When drivers narrow the footpath by parking on them, wheelchair users and people with pushchairs may not have enough space to get past them. They have no option but to move into the road to get past the obstruction, putting them into the potential danger of passing traffic.

The Local Government Association (LGA) has in response to this problem, commissioned a new report. They carried this out in conjunction with the disability rights association ‘Transport for All‘ and the charity Sustrans.

LGA Comments

Cllr Darren Rodwell, transport spokesperson for the LGA, said:

“Pavement parking is one of the biggest complaints from pedestrians. But three years on, councils outside of London still do not have the powers they need to tackle this scourge.

“Vulnerable and disabled people, including wheelchair users as well as parents with pushchairs have to walk into the road due to some drivers’ inconsiderate parking. Presenting a real hazard and potential danger to life.

“Repairing kerbs and pavements damaged by pavement parking is also expensive. This funding could be better used to resurface our roads and pavements, support local buses and provide more suitable parking.

“If we are to meet the Government’s ambition for half of all trips in England’s towns and cities to be walked, wheeled or cycled by 2030; then it makes sense to give councils across the country the same powers as in the capital, making our streets safer and footpaths open for everyone.”

So, if you are one of those drivers who think it’s okay to park on the pavement, think again. There are places however, where pavement parking is acceptable due to narrow roads. Where parking on the road would make it difficult for natural traffic flow to occur, then local traffic regulations may change the rules . But unless there are traffic signs specifically showing that you can do this (see above); you may end up in the near future with a large fine for your actions.

 

 

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Pavement Parking - Is it Illegal?
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Pavement Parking - Is it Illegal?
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Pavement parking is common practise in the UK. Fines may sometimes be handed to drivers who create a hazard by doing this, but is it actually against the law?
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UK Driving Skills
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