Campaigners fear pavement parking ban won’t be enforced across Scotland

Councils in some areas of Scotland will struggle to enforce the forthcoming ban on pavement parking, campaigners fear.

Tuesday, 31st December 2019, 1:53 pm
The pavement parking ban is designed to prevent pedestrians having to walk onto the road to get past vehicle obstructions
The pavement parking ban is designed to prevent pedestrians having to walk onto the road to get past vehicle obstructions

Living Streets is concerned that local authorities which do not already control parking will be unable to clamp down on rogue drivers who continue to block footways.

The lobby group said such councils often relied on the police, who may have little interest or capacity to fine motorists parking on pavements.

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One third of local authorities – 11 – do not operate decriminalised parking, where councils enforce parking controls.

They cover Aberdeenshire, Clackmannanshire, Dumfries and Galloway, Moray, North Ayrshire, Orkney, Scottish Borders, Shetland, West Dunbartonshire, West Lothian and the Western Isles.

Living Streets Scotland director Stuart Hay said: “Councils have an awful lot of work to do if the ban on footway parking is to be a success. This means putting in place the signs, lines and intelligence to make enforcement effective. Councils without decriminalised parking powers are clearly going to struggle.”

“We want to see local authorities getting the resources they need so the ban can come into force in 2021.”

He added: “Disabled people have waited years to see pavements cleared of parked cars. A long delay implementing these very welcome laws would be unacceptable.”

Police Scotland said: “Only for the most severe of obstruction cases, for example, dangerous parking, on controlled zones of pelican crossings and similar, should police officers be called.”

A spokesman for the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, which represents councils, said: “The ban introduces new duties for local authorities which are likely to have resource implications.

“We are working with both councils and Transport Scotland to assess what the implications of the ban are going to be and look for ways to mitigate any adverse impact on councils’ budgets.”

The Scottish Government’s Transport Scotland agency said it did not have a date yet for the introduction of the ban, made law under the Transport (Scotland) Bill, which is awaiting Royal Assent.

A spokesperson said guidance for councils on implementing the ban would be drawn up early in the New Year. She said councils without decriminalised parking could liaise with other local authorities to share expertise.

She said: “Local authorities without the necessary powers will be able to use outside resources to enforce the new regulations so inconsiderate parking can be addressed consistently across the country.

“We are currently working with councils and interested parties, including Living Streets, to ensure this type of issue is addressed in the national parking standards guidance.”

Aberdeenshire and Moray councils said they would develop enforcement proposals once the guidance was published.

Dumfries & Galloway, Orkney, Shetland, West Lothian and Western Isles said they would consider how to enforce the ban.

Clackmannanshire, North Ayrshire and North Lanarkshire said they were considering decriminalised parking,

Scottish Borders said council parking attendants would carry out enforcement.