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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69378
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Good Morning. Please can you advise me on a parking matter;

Customer Question

Good Morning. Please can you advise me on a parking matter; the residents across the road from us are parking part road, part pavement very close to a junction. The road is very narrow which restricts/blocks the view when pulling out of the junction. This also makes it very awkward for us getting on/ off our driveway. The police have been involved since approx. April 2013; one officer says its illegal to park within 10m of a junction whilst other officers have stated its ok. When we have telephoned 101 when the parking has been intolerable (as advised by the police) different officers have attended all with different personal professional opinions as to what an "obstruction is". All the residents on our street (Salisbury Drive, Prestatyn, LL19 8DL. We live at number 60, the residents opposite causing a nuisance/ annoyance/ obstruction live at number 65) have received final warning parking letters from police quoting section 137 of the highways act 1980 and 137(1) but the police now state there is nothing they can do. I find this absurd they are "powerless" now to do something about this situation. The residents in question live on a corner plot; they have a driveway is in St Asaph Drive (Prestatyn LL19 8DL) and ample space on St Asaph Drive to park on the road where they would not be causing a nuisance/ annoyance/ obstruction to anyone else due to the layout of the properties. Number 65 have no driveway etc. at the front of their property which faces ours.
All we would like is for the residents of number 65 to stop parking on Salisbury Drive opposite our property. Please can you advise us what can be done from a legal point of view to stop this. We have also spoken at length with our local council (Denbighshire County Council) who state there is nothing they can do and that this is a police matter. The disabled lady who lives next door at number 62 is also extremely unhappy with the situation and their inconsiderate parking makes her life very difficult.
We are getting nowhere, in regards XXXXX XXXXX law, with them causing an "obstruction" as the police officers themselves have to define this, is there another approach, legally, to stop this.
Many thanks in anticipation.
Kind Regards
Rod & Hannah
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Hi.

Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

Just to clarify, the police have stated this is not an obstruction?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


For Jo C


 


The last attending officer stated:


on that occasion in her professional opinion the vehicle was not causing an obstruction on the pavement and the road. There was sufficient space for a wheelchair to pass on the pavement and for traffic to pass freely on the road. Although the vehicle was parked closely to the junction visibility to exit the junction was clear.


An officer has spoken to Rod previously who said it is difficult to define an obstruction, he quoted is it an obstruction to the street, exit/ entry our driveway, neighbours driveway.


Its crystal clear any vehicles where they park is a nuisance/ annoyance/ obstruction and a dangerous obstacle to negotiate.


They have been moved previously from opposite our house by the police and we are at a loss to understand why the police are now allowing them to park there.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Is this a public road? Adopted by the council?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Yes public road, adopted by council.


 

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Thanks.

The reason the police are allowing them to park there is that inconsiderate parking is not their remit. For the police to act they need to find a car parked in a way that causes an obstruction of the highroad. That actually does not include wheelchair access.

To cause an obstruction you need to obstruct the highway - something like parking across a dropped kerb.

If its just that the car is parked with wheels on a footway for instance causing a difficulty for wheelchair uses then that is not causing an obstruction. There is another contravention of parking with wheels on a footway but that is enforced by the local council.

Parking is largely decriminalised now. The police only really enforce actually dangerous parking or causing an obstruction.

Thats not to say that the council would not be prepared to act since this is public road but its not police remit unless, of course, he does actually cause an obstruction.

I'm sorry this isn't the answer you wanted but it is the position that you face and I have a duty to inform you truthfully.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your reply.
Its very difficult over email to fully explain and see for yourself what issues we have faced. The police have moved the offending vehicle from directly across our driveway causing an obstruction. They have also moved them from close to the junction saying illegal to park within 10m of a junction. The problem we've had is different officers opinions on the day vary; yesterday we photographed and recorded getting off our drive and turning onto the junction and then return journey where the vehicle was clearly obstructing full view down the street. Viewing photos/ video is essential for decision to be made. We don't understand how officers find both these cases acceptable, Our neighbour now has to reverse off her drive into a junction, which is a different matter in itself. So we are surprised there are no stronger laws.


Are we able to look at it from S28 Town Police Cause Act 1847 makes it an offence to obstruct the street to the distraction, annoyance or danger of residents or passengers?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
There is an offence in parking within 10 metres of a junction but it isn't often used anymore. Apart from anything else its difficult for officers at scene to measure the distance and its quite specific.

Generally speaking the police take the view that parking disputes are for the local council unless there is clear obstruction of the highway.

S28 of the TCA 1847 will be found here

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/Vict/10-11/89/section/28

and it doesnt make it an offence to distract, annoy or endanger. It makes it an offence to commit specific acts which distract, annoy or endanger. Those specific acts do not extend to this.

In any event, thats for the council.

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