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Fife Council - Fines to be issued for `misusing` disabled bays

DRIVERS will be fined for wrongly parking in disabled bays in new legislation to be introduced later this month.

Fife Council will be making all disabled persons' parking places in public roads and public car parks legally enforceable. Currently, 85 per cent of disabled bays are not legally enforceable.

The recommendation to promote traffic regulation orders was passed at recent meeting of the Environment, Enterprise & Transportation Committee.

It was brought forward as a result of the Scottish Government's Disabled Persons' Parking Places (Scotland) Act 2009, which made it a duty of local authorities to promote the proper use of on and off-street disabled parking places.

The Act specifies that by 30th September 20I0 local authorities must make all affected existing disabled bays legally enforceable, which will include the need to provide signs and lines at each location to make the public aware of this and to allow enforcement.

The Act also requires local authorities to seek agreement with private car park owners such as supermarkets to negotiate an agreement that makes the spaces enforceable.

One of Fife Council's 'Big 8' priorities is to provide targeted support to vulnerable people, and councillors at the Committee meeting agreed that introducing more widespread enforcement of disabled parking places would go some way towards this.  

Councillor Tony Martin, chair of the Environment, Enterprise & Transportation Committee, said, "It's vital that we can enforce against those who carry out the socially unacceptable practice of misusing disabled parking spaces."

Committee member, Lochgelly  and Cardenden councillor Mark Hood, said, "This legislation is welcome and Fife Council must now enforce it to ensure that people with disabilities and access issues are able to get access to designated parking".

The Labour councillor did however express concern at the amount of poles and signs that may have to be installed in streets to ensure enforcement.

"We need to take a common sense approach to this and monitor the amount of street furniture that is created as a result of the legislation," he added.

"We certainly don't want to clog up streets with 'no parking' signs on poles."
The Times understands fines issued will be £60.

This article is from the Central Fife Times September 2nd 2010 www.centralfifetimes.com


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Disabilities Fife
West Bridge Mill, Bridge Street,
Kirkcaldy, Fife, KY1 1TE
Scottish Charity No: SC 026112