Parking: pick your spot wisely

Posted on February 25th, 2013 by James Luckhurst

Parked carTHE IMAGE you see was taken yesterday in my home village. The gold car had been left by its owner in that position, simply because there would then be a nice short walk to the pharmacy (pictured in the background). Before I go any further, I should state that the driver of this gold car was not in need of any assistance (there is a space directly outside reserved for blue badge holders), so it can be assumed that she (it was a lady in – I guess – her 50s) would have managed a slightly longer walk from vehicle to store.

Now, let me make clear my disapproval. Rule 243 requires that we do not park within 10 metres (32 feet) of a junction, and for good reason. Picture a car coming down the road and wishing to turn left past the gold car. Just a little further up is a school, so who’s to say there might be a child crossing in front of the gold car – completely concealed. Also, consider how significantly the road width is reduced; there’s certainly no room for two cars to pass at the junction.

The purple estate car which you see in the extreme left of the picture should also have found somewhere else to park. Rule 243 again: do not park opposite a junction. Again, it’s for good reason. Junctions tend to be where most accidents happen.

There is, I would imagine, a zero likelihood of a police officer or traffic warden coming past this spot and slapping a ticket on the gold car (or the purple car). But learning through enforcement of the rules isn’t the only way. It would be good for all of us to think about the risks we may be posing to others when we park our cars. And if that means a slightly longer walk to drop the children, pick up tablets or collect a take-away, then so be it. At least we’re making ourselves part of the solution, not the problem, when it comes to making our roads safer.