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Disabled Parking: Use and Abuse.

10003431_10152340778527413_8337629689821661676_nIt’s a situation that burns people with a sense of right and fair play: seeing seemingly non disabled drivers parking in clearly marked Disabled Parking spots. Invariably, there’s no indication of a sticker inside the car, a requirement in order to use these spots. Unsurprisingly, when these drivers are talked to by security personnel, there’s an unleashing of swearing and attitude that would shame an old salt. Yet, like so many things we see on the roads nowadays, there’s no need for this, there’s no need for this attitude. and the NSW state government appears to have finally said “enough”

In a move that the government hopes will dissuade non-legal users of the Disabled car parks, it’s been put forward that demerits points for drivers that are caught improperly using Disabled parking spots be implemented and fines increased. In NSW, fines are currently $519 for using the space without a permit and $623 for improperly using a permit. NSW Roads Minister, the Hon. Duncan Gay, says his office is responding to the numbers of enquiries and complaints in regards to improper usage, including a submission from the Lane Cover council. Ironically, Lane Cove councillor, Karola Brent, was photographed parking her Range Rover in a Disabled car space…533698-disabled-parking

Approximately 800,000 Australians are registered to have a Disabled parking sticker, while in NSW, around 16,000 fines are issued annually to people that have breached the regulations. The tough talking Mr Gay said: “Able-bodied people who steal disabled carparks from people who genuinely need them are low-lifes, plain and simple. I’ve asked Roads and Maritime Services to look at introducing demerit point penalties for people parking ­illegally in disabled carparks. I have utmost sympathy for the people who are disadvantaged by this sick behaviour.”

If you think over $500 for a fine is steep, consider this: the UK fines people up to Au$1840.00 whilst in San Francisco it’s up to Au$1100.00. The message is clear: don’t park in the wrong spot, take responsibility when you’re hauled up on it and be prepared to be stung when you’re caught.10441030_588665061239881_4321363551007295238_n

What do you think: shound demerit points be introduced or should the fines be heavier?