I’m sure you’ll all have experienced the annoying situation where a car has parked a bit too far on the pavement and you’ve either had to try and shimmy through the tiny space or walk in the road. It’s not exactly stepping on Lego, but it’s pretty irritating.
It must be particularly annoying for parents with prams and wheelchair users, who might need the extra space.
However, according to UK law, it isn’t illegal for a car to park on the pavement, but blocking the pavement is.
Now East Hertfordshire police are taking the unusual step of strolling through the street pushing buggies and, if they can’t fit through because of a car, handing out fines.
East Hertfordshire’s Chief Inspector Gerry McDonald told the Hertfordshire Mercury: “It is about being sensible. The reason we are using a pram as a measure clearly illustrates the issue.
“We are trying to find a balance between the need of everyone but what I can’t have is parents and buggies and disabled people being forced into the road and that is why we are using this tool.”
The scheme began in Hertfordshire today and, I’m not going to lie, it looks pretty surreal. Once they’ve found that the pram can’t quite fit through the gap, the officers will measure the space before issuing a ticket.
Sergeant Duncan Wallace said: “My evidence is that there is narrow gap on the pavement and this is a densely populated residential area where footfall is going to be high.
“The footfall will likely include people on mobility scooters, wheelchairs and they should not be asked to go out into the main carriageway.
“That is what the pavement is for.”