Would you deliberately put your children in danger? Of course not. So why is it, then, that some parents think it’s okay to park on zig-zag lines outside schools?
Today we reveal figures from a Freedom of Information Act request that show 859 people have received fixed-penalty notices for doing so across Portsmouth, Havant and Fareham.
The vast majority of the fines were in Portsmouth where, between January 1 last year and March 29 this year, 745 people received a £70 fine.
Schools and councils have put up signs and employed parking wardens in a bid to discourage drivers from parking on the lines during busy school hours.
But there are clearly people who don’t see why they should change their behaviour.
Victoria Page, headteacher of Langstone Infant School, in Baffins, says it is a ‘big problem’, adding: ‘We have been in the road moving people away and, although the majority of people are okay about it, some people can get abusive.’
Is it a combination of selfishness and laziness that causes them to pull up where children are crossing rather than finding a space farther down the road?
Some might claim they are in a rush in the morning to drop off their children and get off to work. But how would they feel if a child was injured as a result of their actions?
We support any efforts being made to stop the zig-zag parkers, from patrols to Portsmouth City Council’s use of two portable cameras.
It’s also got to be worth promoting the benefits of walking to school, which would cut traffic and make the school run easier for those who have to use cars.
But what can be done about those for whom the prospect of being hit in the pocket for £70 doesn’t seem to have any effect?
The challenge has to be getting through to them that parking for a few minutes on a zig-zag is just not worth the potential risk to children.
The zig-zags are there for a very good reason – so stay away.
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