Provision of disabled persons parking bays outside private homes
Issued: 6 September 2004
1. Pressure for on-street parking within residential areas can make it difficult for vehicle drivers to park near to their property. Where this occurs and the driver, or in exceptional circumstances a passenger, of a vehicle has severe mobility problems then consideration will be given to providing a disabled persons carriageway marking. In making this commitment it is essential that firm criteria are met before the marking is provided in order to avoid it being brought into disrepute and to ensure that those with the greatest need derive the maximum benefit.
2. Before a request for the carriageway marking is granted the following criteria will need to be satisfied.
(a) No off-street parking facilities will exist within the curtilage of the property in question and such provision will not be practicable.
(b) The pressure for on-street parking must be such that the applicant is unlikely to be able to park in a suitable location, in close proximity to their property, for the majority of the day.
(c) The applicant should usually be the driver of the vehicle. In exceptional circumstances this may be widened to include persons other than the driver of the vehicle where the applicant has a permanent and substantial disability that would place them at risk if left unattended for any length of time. In these instances, the driver of the vehicle must also reside at the address where the marking is to be provided.
(d) The mobility problems of the applicant are such that walking any distance, from their car to their property, would be unacceptable. The attached application form has been drafted to provide the information necessary to permit an initial assessment to be carried out.
(e) Evidence of need, by way of a copy of a notice of entitlement / letter of confirmation to receive the required level of allowance must be provided to ensure that the marking is necessary and that the applicant does have a severe mobility problem.
(f) There should be no existing waiting restrictions adjacent the applicant’s home.
(g) A marking in the ‘turning head’ of a cul-de-sac is not appropriate.
3. The reasons for the criteria are as follows:
(a) If the disabled person already has the availability of suitable off-street parking, then it is reasonable to expect them to use it.
(b) The provision of a carriageway marking in a location where it appears unnecessary to the general motoring public is less likely to be respected and will erode the general effectiveness of the markings. In addition, it is not felt that situations where a vehicle driver is only occasionally unable to park in the desired location would normally warrant the introduction of carriageway markings.
(c) Where it is the passenger of a vehicle who is disabled it is reasonable to expect, in certain circumstances, the driver of the vehicle to stop as close to the property as possible, perhaps double parking if necessary, and then to park the vehicle in the normal way (obstruction should be avoided).
(d) Concessions for the disabled are already permitted within existing waiting restriction orders.
(e) Bays will not be provided in ‘turning heads.’ Whilst parking probably takes place in such locations it should not be condoned. The provision of a parking bay could be seen to endorse it.
(f) A bay marking primarily for the use of ambulances, carers and visitors is not appropriate. Such action would lead to many more bays being provided and as they are unlikely to be in use for long periods the effectiveness of other bays will be diminished.
4. Application forms will be issued, upon request, by the corporate director (development services) who will process the application and if appropriate carry out a site assessment based on traffic management grounds.
5. If an application is unsuccessful on disability grounds the applicant may be advised to seek an assessment from the director of social services and/or disability benefits unit.
6. Where the assessment criteria are met and an appropriate safe location can be identified, an appropriate carriageway marking will be provided free of charge to the applicant. The need to charge a fee will be reviewed should a large number of applications be granted.
7. The corporate director (development services) will advise the applicant of the decision relating to the success or otherwise of any application.
8. The parking bay will be advisory only. Enforcement action by either the police or local authority will not be possible.