Motorists could soon be faced with a £70 fine for parking on a pavement anywhere in England under new laws.
MPs have launched an investigation to examine the problems caused when vehicles are parked on a pavement with at least one wheel, which could see hefty penalties introduced.
Illegal in London
Parking on a pavement has been illegal in London since 1974, with motorists given a £70 fine for causing an obstruction.
The Transport Select Committee is now examining the problems the practice causes, including blocking access for wheelchair users, pushchairs and damage to surfaces, meaning the penalties could be extended to the rest of England.
If new laws are implemented following the investigation, this will allow local councils to make it illegal to park on a kerb, unless explicit permission has been granted.
At the moment, it is only illegal for lorries to stop on pavements outside of the capital, although drivers who park their car in a dangerous position, or cause an unnecessary obstruction to other road users, can still be fined.
Need for new regulations
A combination of both criminal and civil sanctions are available to police and local councils to enforce restrictions on pavement parking.
However, the committee is calling for written evidence on the impact of pavement parking, the enforcement of existing rules and the need for new regulations.
Labour MP and chair of the committee Lilian Greenwood, told The Sun, “This is an area where some people’s actions cause real difficulties for others.
“Parking on pavements risks the safety of all groups of people, from the littlest to the oldest, with differing needs.
“We want to hear from the public about the difficulties this presents and the solutions on offer.”
The investigation needs to carefully consider how to strike the right balance with new regulations, as parking with a wheel on the pavement on some of Britain’s narrow residential streets is often done so as not to impede road access for other vehicles and emergency services, Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of road policy argued.
AA president Edmund King also stressed that an outright ban on pavement parking would be “a step too far”, stating an assessment of individual streets should be carried out to determine suitability.
He said, “A street-by-street assessment is needed to decide where it may be suitable to allow pavement parking.
“Where pavement parking is allowed, seven out of 10 drivers say the bays should be marked out to show how much of the pavement can be used.
“Pavement parking poses problems on both inner city streets and rural lanes, so the outcome needs to be tailored to the circumstances.”