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Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Parking in a disabled parking bay - have you done it?

Would you park in a disabled parking bay?

Last week I was at my local gym.  It was early evening and as I drove into the car park I noticed that it was quite busy, I carried on driving down and eventually found myself a space. Even though it was really busy there were still quite a few free spaces at the back of the car park with a short walk to the gym’s entrance.

As I was walking into the entrance of the gym, I saw a young man drive straight into one of the disabled parking bays, he parked his car and then jumped out and ran into the gym.  I had a look at his car and I couldn't see a blue badge anywhere. I was completely shocked to see someone who was obviously fit and healthy park in a disabled bay because they were late for their gym class. This person could have prevented a person with a genuine disability from parking outside the main entrance.

I went inside the gym and reported the incident to the receptionist, she said that it happens a lot and they regularly have to check the bays and call out driver’s number plates to tell them to move their cars when they don’t have a blue badge. 

When I visited the gym on Saturday morning which is the busiest time of the week I was even more shocked to see that every disabled bay was full and only 1 of the cars had a blue badge.
Then the other day, I was driving to the post office and all of the spaces apart from the disabled space were full. The woman driving in front of me drove straight into the disabled bay, got out of her car and ran into a shop. I walked past her car on my way into the post office and couldn’t see a blue badge anywhere. There was only one disabled parking bay and this woman was incredibly selfish to use it.

What is the fine for parking in a disabled parking bay?

It is an offence to park a vehicle in a Blue Badge parking bay without displaying a Blue Badge and you could actually get a maximum fine of £1,000.
I did some research into Blue Badges and it turns out that many people use fake blue badges or borrow their friends/families blue badges so that they can park in disabled parking bays.  A new company has been created called BBFI and they are dedicated to investigating fraud against the government. They are now working on taking people to court if they are using a lost/stolen/borrowed or fake blue badge.

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