Public welcomes new parking enforcement as drivers face fines

Residents across Oxfordshire have welcomed changes to the way parking rules are enforced and have been letting the new officers know where they should patrol.

On 1 November, Oxfordshire County Council took control of civil parking enforcement in the Cherwell, South Oxfordshire, and Vale of White Horse district council areas from the police. The council already looks after parking enforcement in Oxford and in West Oxfordshire through an agency agreement.

In the first two weeks, enforcement officers issued 1,199 warning notices to drivers who broke the rules, while the council received 75 requests from the public to target certain areas where inconsiderate parking has been a problem.

Councillor Tim Bearder, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said: “We are delighted with the response so far, and it is heartening to hear that so many people are thanking our enforcement officers for doing something about a problem that has been going on for many years. It must be a myth that being an enforcement officer is a thankless task!

“People in places including Banbury, Bicester, Abingdon, Didcot and Wallingford have praised our officers for finally taking action against drivers who have previously been getting away with it, while causing a major inconvenience to other road users, cyclists and pedestrians. We’ve addressed a notorious spot in Garsington twice where drivers had been causing a danger by parking on double yellow lines, issuing 10 warnings. We’ve even been called to a car parked on a pedestrian crossing in Thame.”

For the first two weeks, officers only issued warning notices to offenders, to make sure people were aware of the new enforcement regime. However, from Monday 15 November, drivers who break the rules face fines of between £50 and £70, depending on the contravention, although these will be halved if paid within a certain period.

The new enforcement officers are responsible for permit holder parking and on-street pay and display parking, as well as:

  • double and single yellow lines
  • limited waiting bays
  • loading bays
  • zig-zag markings at schools (if restrictions apply)
  • pedestrian crossings
  • double parking (parking too far from the kerb)
  • blue badge bays
  • taxi ranks
  • parking in bus lanes and stops
  • parking across dropped kerbs where there’s a crossing point, with or without tactile paving.

People can report incidents of illegally parked vehicles by using Oxfordshire County Council’s online form.

The police will continue to be responsible for dealing with dangerously parked vehicles where there are no parking restrictions in place, such as on bends, brows of hills and junctions, and parking pavement with no parking restrictions. People can report these issues to the police by calling 101.

Car parks remain the responsibility of district and town councils.

More information is available on Oxfordshire County Council’s website.

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