BADIG Campaign: Stop Parking On Pavements
One of the obstacles most commonly encountered by disabled people are cars parked on pavements or pedestrian crossings. Parking cars in this way is not only illegal but can cause serious problems for people with disability going about their daily life.
We know how difficult it can be to find a parking space in Ballymun and how tempting it is to park illegally on the pavement, even for a few minutes while going into the local shop or when collecting a child from school. However, partially blocking a pavement or pedestrian crossing can cause serious disruption not only to disabled people, such as wheelchair users, but also to mothers with children in pushchairs and elderly people using mobility aids. For people who are visually impaired, encountering an unexpected obstacle on their familiar route can cause considerable confusion. In the worst case, blocking a pavement in this way can result in people having to use the public road to get around a parked car and this can be very dangerous for a wheelchair user or someone who is partially sighted or blind.
BADIG has campaigned on this issue for many years. In 2012 we undertook our own survey of the issue, which confirmed that illegal and inconsiderate parking of cars was widespread and a problem affecting local disabled people every day. We presented our results to local people, councillors and representatives of State bodies at a conference ‘Parking on Pavements’ in 2014. However, our experience is that this is still a common problem today.
We do not believe that anyone purposely sets out to hinder or put another person in danger.
We continue to campaign to raise awareness by reminding local people:
To try to avoid parking on pavements, even where they are wide, as encountering an unexpected obstacle can cause significant problems for people who are visually impaired.
Not to park on pedestrian crossings or areas of dipped paving. These are vital to allow disabled people to cross the road safely.
If you decide to risk a fine and park illegally partially blocking a pavement, remember to leave enough space for the safe passage of people in wheelchairs, mothers with pushchairs, etc.
A small number of reserved disabled parking spaces are provided at convenient locations in Ballymun, enabling disabled drivers to park safely and close to their destination.
It can be very tempting for other drivers to make use of these disabled parking spaces.
However, parking in such a space without displaying the appropriate badge can result in a substantial fine. In addition, it deprives a disabled driver of a safe parking space, possibly resulting in delay or their having to cancel their trip – disabled drivers cannot find alternative safe parking spaces as easily as other drivers.