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MPs Recommend Ban on Pavement Parking

MPs Recommend Ban on Pavement Parking

Disability Sheffield are pleased to report that this month MPs have recommended a ban on pavement parking across England.

The Transport Committee has criticised the Department for Transport for failing to take action on pavement parking, which MPs have been told has a detrimental effect on people’s lives and can lead to social isolation.

In the report, Pavement parking, the Committee calls for an outright ban on pavement parking across England in the long-term.

Written evidence submitted by Disability Sheffield, Disability Hub and the Access Liaison Group said Accessibility to Transport and the built environment is often reported as one of eight most disabling barriers to disabled people’s participation.

To address the dangers of pavement parking to disabled people and other protected groups the organisations say that, Enforcement is the key issue. They say it must be easy and cost effective for a council to both bring in a ban to pavement parking and act on contraventions. It is important that it is straightforward to report contraventions for disabled people and the potential to photograph the vehicle to report and seed enforcement would be useful.

The groups say they “would welcome guidance setting out maximum response time targets for urgent/repeated offences which block or put a person in danger due to a parking contravention”. In terms of policing and procedures the group said they envisaged a PCN notice being discharged to drivers parking illegally.

The organisations were pleased to see Paul Blomfield, Member of Parliament for Sheffield Central, reported on issues raised by his constituents. In Paul’s response he said, “there is the problem of vehicles parking partly on the pavement and causing an obstruction for pedestrians, guide dog owners, pushchairs and wheelchairs. Pavement users are forced to leave the pavement and use the public highway which poses obvious risks”.

In his response he also said he was contacted regarding incidents where vehicles are blocking access to private driveways and garages, preventing people being able to travel in their own vehicles to work or to medical appointments.

Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind (SRSB) gave the following statement to the Sheffield groups saying, “Pavement parking is certainly an issue for our visually impaired clients. Sometimes, motorists may think they are being helpful by parking off the road, or sometimes it may be that they just don’t think at all. However, in either case, they may not realise the impact it can have on someone who has sight loss, as well as many other members of the community “.

“From the point of view of people with sight loss, we would urge people to consider that by parking on a pavement it blocks access. The person with sight loss may have to step out into the road to get around the vehicle, and obviously, with little or no sight, may then be in danger of not being able to allow for other moving vehicles”.

The Disability Hub, Disability Sheffield and the Access Liaison Group are grateful to Access Officers at Sheffield City Council who alert us to parliamentary consultations in order for us to campaign strongly with our elected representatives. Without their help it would be difficult to maintain or be as effective.

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