Home Somerset rules Can you really be fined for parking on sidewalks? The law and how it affects you

Can you really be fined for parking on sidewalks? The law and how it affects you


Parking can be a problem for many motorists in a number of ways.

Whether it’s finding a place to park, making sure you park legally, or even just upgrading your reverse parallel parking – which many will appreciate – the job can be a hazard if you don’t. pay no attention.

When parking spaces are scarce or the roads are narrow, one solution found by motorists is to partially park on a sidewalk along the road.

READ MORE: Ten Common Mistakes That Could Invalidate Your Auto Insurance

However, this action plan, while not specifically illegal in the UK outside of London, has still seen people fined in the past and the question of whether you will be punished for it. is thorny.

Parking practices are monitored by local and district councils across the country, and it is these agencies that may still see fit to bring drivers who partially park on the side of the road.

Here is the current situation for motorists in the UK.

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Is parking on a sidewalk illegal?

There is currently no law specifically prohibiting sidewalk parking anywhere in the UK outside of London.

The UK traffic laws currently only specify this in London and do not mention that sidewalks are illegal parking spaces elsewhere.

Rule number 244 of the Code says the following: “You must not park partially or fully on the London pavement, and should not do so elsewhere, unless signs allow.

“Parking on the roadway can hinder and seriously hinder pedestrians, people in wheelchairs or visually impaired people and people with prams or strollers. “

However, no specific general law prohibits the practice anywhere else in the country at this time, although plans have been raised to ban it more broadly in the future.

Parking on the pavement is not illegal in most parts of the UK, but you could still be fined

There may be individual traffic control orders (TRO) implemented by the council responsible for a given area to restrict parking practices on any street or area, which could include parking on streets or areas. Sidewalks made illegal in this area, but this currently only works in one case – on a case-by-case basis.

This is the case in England and Wales, and the same is currently true in Scotland.

The Scottish Parliament passed a law banning pavement parking in October 2019. However, it has yet to implement the ban, so for now the rules are the same as for the rest of the UK .

It is also completely forbidden for goods transport vehicles to park on sidewalks, except when absolutely essential for loading or unloading, due to the risk of damaging the curbs or surfaces of the sidewalks.

Rule 246 of the Code states: “Vehicles with a maximum laden weight exceeding 7.5 tonnes (including any trailer) must not be parked on an edge, sidewalk or any land between the carriageways, without l police authorization.

“The only exception is when parking is essential for loading and unloading, in which case the vehicle should not be left unattended.”

How is sidewalk parking monitored?

Under applicable laws, as long as the road you are (partially) parked on is a legal road you can park on and you have done so in the correct areas, the car is going on the curb does not make it illegal.

As noted above, the highway code only says that drivers “should not” do it elsewhere, unless expressly permitted.

However, there are situations in which you may still be faced with actions for parking in this way and these would be carried out by local authorities.

The first would be if you park on the sidewalk in an area that is not a legal parking spot in the first place – this would see you fined the same as anyone else for parking. illegally.

A driver who obstructs a sidewalk when parking his car may also be subject to fines if he is found to be obstructing the sidewalk on which he is parked.

An example of “unacceptable” sidewalk parking

This specifically falls under Highway Rule 242, which says of all UK roads: “You must not leave your vehicle or trailer in an unsafe position or where it unnecessarily interferes with the road.”

This means that any vehicle parked on the roadway that presents a danger, for example forcing pedestrians to enter the road to pass a parked vehicle, can result in a fine for the driver.

Often, areas where this is likely to be the case will be indicated by road signs or road markings, as well as Controlled Parking Zones (CPZ).

These restrictions would often be implemented in places where a car partially parked off the road would be likely to interfere with pedestrians, especially wheelchair users, children and parents with strollers.

Councils are mandated to impose fines on people who park on sidewalks when these flags are in place, so drivers may not be fined for the act itself as much as for the obstruction that it causes for pedestrians on the side of the road.

Problematic on-road parking can also be reported to local authorities via fixmystreet.com, especially if damage is caused by cars parked in this manner.

This does not guarantee that someone will be fined for it, but it is likely that an authority will investigate the situation.

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