Call for Sheffield drivers who misuse disabled bays to be punished

Tanya Vickers wants more to be done to tackle people who misuse disabled parking bays.
Tanya Vickers wants more to be done to tackle people who misuse disabled parking bays.
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A disabled woman has called for a change in the law to help stop people parking in blue badge holder spaces without permission.

Tanya Vickers, 62, from Meadowhead, suffers from a condition that causes her to collapse without warning.

She also has fibromyalgia, which causes pain all over her body, along with several other conditions that mean she struggles to walk.

Read more: Six fined as Sheffield Council continues crackdown on blue badge fraud

Tanya has a blue badge and says she needs to park in disabled bays to limit the distance she has to cover between her car and shops.

But she is getting increasingly frustrated with people who don't have blue badges but still park in the disabled bays.

"I have had a problem with them numerous times, and when there are no spaces left you to have to park in parent and child places or just walk a great distance," she said.

"I have tried to talk to those people a good few times but they are not very friendly at all and do not try to apologise and park somewhere else.

"Their main excuses are they have big or new car, they came to shop 'just for a minute', and on some occasions, they pretend that they can't speak English."

Tanya contacted The Star after reading that six people were ordered to pay more than £2,000 between them by magistrates for using blue badges fraudulently, in prosecutions brought by Sheffield Council.

But, she said, that did not help deter those who used the spaces without a badge at all.

"People with blue badges have been prosecuted but people without blue badges go scot-free," she added.

"I think it's time to change the law and address that problem."

Sheffield Council has powers to penalise those who misuse any disabled spaces in its own car parks on on city streets.

Parking wardens can give out parking charge notices, or PCNs, if a car without a blue badge is parked in a disabled bay.

A spokesman said it was important for the public to report misuse so it could be dealt with.

Private parking at shopping centres and supermarkets, such as Meadowhall and Tesco, are not under council control, so it us up to the landowner to enforce the rules.

The council will confiscate any blue badge that is used fraudulently.