By Lucy Ashton
A new driving fine is coming into force next month that can land motorists a £100 fine.
Drivers in some areas will not be able to park their cars on the pavement or face a Penalty Notice of £100 or the removal of their vehicle.
From December 11, councils will be able to enforce the new rule, but only Highland Council has confirmed the new rules will come into effect in its area.
West Dunbartonshire Council is not prepared to disclose to The Democrat if and when these new motoring rules will come into effect.
Edinburgh will become the first city in Scotland to ban cars from pavement when its enforcement begins in January 2024. London is currently the only city to ban pavement parking.
The Scottish Government’s legislation states that if a driver pays the fine within 14 days – beginning with the date the notice was given – they will only need to pay £50.
But those who fail to pay before the Charge Certificate is issued could also face a penalty increase as much as 50%.
There are three “key changes” in relation to parking under the new rules:
- A ban on pavement parking
- A ban on double-parking (more than 50cm from the edge of a carriageway)
- A ban on parking at dropped kerbs installed for pedestrian or cycle usage
There has been an increasing outcry in Dumbarton from wheelchair and motor scooter users over dropped kerbs.
These are said to be dangerous.
Pavement parking in places such as Glasgow Road, going towards Dumbuck, have had mothers with prams and blind people complaining about them for many years.
A grace period with warning notices will be issued for the action in early 2024, according to the Highland Council’s website.
In 2021, the Scottish Government passed a law giving local authorities the power to ban pavement parking. Scotland originally announced the intention in 2019, but this was delayed due to the pandemic.
Pavement parking is an ongoing problem in Dumbarton High Street where delivery drivers and people using cash terminals at banks regularly block the footpath without interference from the police or traffic wardens which have been been dispensed with to save money.
The Scottish Government says the ban sets out to tackle “inconsiderate and obstructive” parking and aims to make pavements and roads more accessible for everybody.
Parking on pavements is already punishable if it causes an obstruction and is included in the Highway Code.
If someone is caught parking on the pavement, they can be charged with “unnecessary obstruction of any part of the highway” with drivers receiving a £70 fine.
There are different rules for different parts of the country and local authorities can restrict pavement parking on individual streets, or by area, by making a traffic regulation order.