Pavement parking: councils call for ban in London to be rolled out across the country
Laws allowing local authorities to ban pavement parking
in London should be rolled out across the country to crack down on
inconsiderate motorists endangering lives, councils say.
The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents
more than 370 councils in England and Wales, says all councils need extra
flexibility to introduce bans if needed.
Such a move could free up congested pavements and stop
pedestrians - particularly the blind and parents with prams and babies -
from having to walk out into roads and risk their lives.
The call comes as communities across the country have
issued safety warnings about pavement parking.
The ban on pavement parking has already been in place in
the capital for the past 40 years. Under existing measures, motorists are barred
from pavement parking unless expressly permitted by a council in the capital.
However, outside London mounting the kerb is generally
allowed apart from where vehicles are causing an obstruction, for example
forcing some vehicles to wait while others pass, or on roads with other
restrictions such as double-yellow lines.
Local authorities can use existing Traffic Regulation
Orders to ban pavement parking on certain roads but it is said to be a
time-consuming, expensive and bureaucratic process.
LGA transport spokesman Councillor Martin Tett said: “Councils
in the capital have been able to ban pavement parking for many years and it
seems a nonsense that local authorities outside London remain unable to do
“Local authorities need this power to respond to concerns
raised by their communities, for example if a street is becoming dangerously
congested or pedestrians are being forced to step out into the street to get
round parked vehicles. This is particularly dangerous for blind or partially-sighted
people and mums and dads with prams.
“Pavement parking and damaged pavements is one of the
biggest complaints from pedestrians. In addition, repairing kerbs, verges and
pavements damaged by pavement parking is expensive at a time when councils
continue to face huge funding pressures as a result of further cuts to funding
from government. The money spent on this would be better used to plug the £12
billion roads repair bill we currently face as a nation.
“Councils would carefully consult with communities before
banning pavement parking and this is done sparingly in response to concerns
which they have raised. This will enable them to better protect vulnerable
pedestrians and provide a more consistent approach for all road users.”