HC Deb 23 March 2000 vol 346 cc619-20W
Shona McIsaac

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what plans he has to prevent able-bodied drivers from using parking bays designated for people with disabilities. [115046]

Mr. Hill

As I announced on 18 November 1999, the Orange Badge Scheme is to be reviewed this year, and one of the areas we will look at is the enforcement of the Scheme.

However, it is already an offence under section 47 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 to park a vehicle which is not displaying an Orange Badge in an on-street designated disabled persons' parking bay.

The Orange Badge Scheme does not, however, apply to off-street car parks, whether local authority or privately owned, and enforcement of those disabled persons' parking bays is a matter for the car park operator concerned. In the case of local authority off-street car parks, normally their off-street parking place orders either make it an offence for someone not displaying a valid Orange Badge to park in a disabled persons' parking bay or make it subject to the payment of an "excess charge". In private car parks, we understand it is possible in law for the owners to agree with the local authority that a parking place order be made in respect of that car park. Conditions of use can then be enforced as if it were a local authority car park, with penalties or excess charges levied on offenders.

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