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Time for pavement parking to hit the road says Guide Dogs

20 Feb 2017

Guide Dogs is calling again on the Government to stop problem pavement parking, following nearly a year of inaction.

The charity has launched a new petition urging the Government to make pavement parking illegal, except in certain areas allowed by local councils.

Cars parked on pavements pose a serious danger to people with sight loss and many other pedestrians, including wheelchair users, older people and parents with pushchairs, by forcing them out on to the road.

Pp Email Photo1In December 2015 MPs debated a proposal to make it an offence to park on pavements except where the local authority has created a special exemption. At the time, Transport Minister Andrew Jones promised the Government would look seriously at the issue, including conducting new research. But almost a year later, no real action has been taken.

Senior campaigns manager at Guide Dogs, James White said: “The Government committed to taking action to end this blight, but little has been done. It’s time for a new nationwide law to end inconsiderate and unnecessary pavement parking. The worry of not knowing if you will need to step into the road due to a blocked pavement is an added stress people with sight loss shouldn’t have to contend with.”

Guide dog owner Nathan Foy, from Cardiff said: “Having to walk in the road because of cars parked on pavements is terrifying, no matter how busy the street. I also have to think about the danger it poses to my guide dog, let alone when I am out with my two-year-old daughter. I’m sure if drivers could experience what it’s like to step out into such a dangerous situation when you can’t see, they’d park elsewhere.”

A survey by Guide Dogs showed that 97% of blind or partially sighted people encounter problems with street obstructions, and 90% of those had experienced trouble with a car parked on a pavement. Guide Dogs campaign for a ban on pavement parking is supported by more than 30 other charities and organisations who want to see a new nationwide law in place.

From 23-26 February the Pavement Parking petition will also feature as Mumsnet’s Guest Campaign of the moment.

Sign our petition and find out what you can do to help.