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Saturday, 01 November 2014

Parking ticket for dropping disabled woman off at shop

DISABLED drivers have hit out at “draconian rules” that prevent them from being dropped off by a shop entrance while their car is parked.

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ANNOYED: Ida Mills (right) who was given a parking ticket for helping a disabled friend who has since died. Also pictured is honorary secretary of Barrow and District Disability Association, Margaret Burrow JOE RILEY REF: 50015505B000

While caring for a severely-disabled elderly woman, Ida Mills drove the lady to Barrow town centre but was unable to find a disabled bay close enough.

So Mrs Mills dropped her off at the shop and parked in Dalton Road then walked back to meet the disabled lady.

But when they returned to the car, Mrs Mills discovered she had been given a parking ticket.

She said: “I returned to Cool Trader to help the lady do her shopping and because we had only been a short time she felt she could manage to walk back to the car. On returning we found I had been given a ticket.”

Mrs Mills’ discovery of the ticket was witnessed by Margaret Burrow, the honorary secretary of the Barrow and District Disability Association.

Mrs Burrow said: “Is there no provision for common sense and reason? I know the council have to deal with people who abuse the system but they are making it very hard for those of us who use blue badges honestly.”

Parking services manager at Barrow Borough Council, Caren Hindle, refused to comment on individual cases but said: “The requirement is for the badge holder to be in the vehicle when it is parked in a dedicated disabled parking bay.”

But Home Office guidance issued in October last year suggests disabled passengers do not necessarily need to be in the vehicle at all times.

The guidance states: “It is not illegal for a badge holder, or a non-disabled person waiting for the badge holder to return, to remain in the vehicle while the blue badge is displayed.

“(The badge) must only be displayed if you are travelling in the vehicle as a driver or passenger, or if someone is collecting you or dropping you off and needs to park nearby for your benefit.”

The Evening Mail understands the DfT is considering re-wording the guidance to local authorities to clarify the regulations.

Mrs Mills, of Rampside, refused to pay the £80 fine and successfully appealed against the ticket.

She said: “It’s wrong that a disabled person is not allowed to be dropped off at a convenient location while their driver goes to find a disabled parking spot. So unless I could find a spot directly outside the store, the disabled lady can’t shop herself.

“What right does anybody have to take away what little independence disabled people have?

“This seems to be draconian enforcement of somewhat vague rules.”

Have your say

I was working as a carer around 7 years ago and had two disabled wheelchair users in the works minibus, i was trying to park behind the town hall but the disabled spaces were full and the wheelchair ramp came 6 foot out of the side door, i had no choice but to park slightly over the line therefore in two spaces, I could not have got the ladies out and left them at the side of the road whilst i parked up as they both had a learning disability and couldn't be left unattended, howver upon my return had received a ticket for going over the line even though there were many empty spaces, I wanted to complain at the time but my employers didn't want any publicity and just paid the fine but it makes me mad to this day, especially when its one rule for them and one for us....remember the Mayors car parked on a loading bay whilst the driver got his fish and chips?

Posted by Denis Horan on 19 January 2011 at 12:37

Dear Frustrated.
People with blue badges do not enjoy the same level of mobility the likes of you and I have, My father in law, and my mother in law are both blue badge holders, one cannot walk at all, the other only a few yards. When they park outside a shop, they are certainly not doing it to inconvenience you. They should be afforded the same level of freedom everyone else has, and this involves the right to choose, where and when to shop. Your comment regarding the ticket being deserved for not parking correctly typifies the level of discrimination disabled people suffer. The ticket was appealed and the appeal was won, the car WAS parked legally, the disabled person does not have to be in the car when it is parked. Its useless traffic wardens who do not know the simple rules set out by the government.

Posted by Ian Corbin on 19 January 2011 at 10:35

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