New weapon launched in war on illegal parking by schools

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A new car is to be used to target drivers who put children’s lives at risk by parking illegally near Bradford schools.

Bradford Council’s latest weapon in the war on selfish motorists is a CCTV parking enforcement car.

The vehicle will be used to target drivers who endanger lives and hinder the safe flow of traffic by parking on zig-zag lines outside schools and at pedestrian crossings.

It will also be used to clock people parking in bus stops and on double yellow lines.

Councillor Val Slater, Bradford Council’s executive member for housing, planning and transport, said: “There have been a number of major problems at schools across our district caused by 
drivers who park irresponsibly, posing a serious risk to the 
safety of children and other pedestrians.

“The safety of children around our schools is paramount and selfish and dangerous motorists are putting the lives of our children in danger on a daily basis. The zig-zag markings are there for a reason, children need to be able to see to cross the road and if cars are parked illegally, this blocks the view of on-coming traffic.

“People think that it’s OK parking for just a minute, but it takes less than that for a child’s life to be ended and they will have to live with the consequences for the rest of their lives.”

The specialist car is fitted with automatic number plate recognition technology and records details of illegally parked vehicles as it passes by.

It has undergone extensive road testing across the district to ensure it works as it should.

Bradford Council says the camera vehicle is not designed to replace wardens and will be clearly marked to show that it is a CCTV car, displaying the council’s logo.

The vehicle can also be used throughout the day and in evenings to deal with other illegal parking hot-spots across the district.

Chris Kelly, chair of governors at Grove House Primary School, has welcomed the use of the car.

Ms Kelly said: “We wholeheartedly welcome this initiative that will help keep children safe while getting to and from school. Hopefully, it will also ease congestion in the neighbourhood by encouraging more parents to walk their children to school.”

Children across the district took part in events last week to mark United Nations Global Road Safety Week.

At Miriam Lord Primary School Bradford Council’s Road Safety Team and West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service held pedestrian training sessions and education on seat belt safety and staying safe around large vehicles.