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Anger over drivers blocking pavements in South Tyneside

A van parked on pavement in Beach Road
A van parked on pavement in Beach Road

A South Tyneside resident has hit out at inconsiderate drivers who block pavements forcing people out onto the road.

The Cleadon Park resident, who wished not to be named, says something needs to be done before someone is hurt.

A van blocking the pavement at the Nook

A van blocking the pavement at the Nook

He has recently snapped a number of vans which have pulled up onto pavements - often completely blocking the pathway or forcing pedestrian to squeeze through tiny gaps.

The issue has been raised as the Department for Transport is considering new laws to prevent cars parking on pavements.

Under the new laws drivers could be fined up to £70.

If passed, it is understood it will be down to individual councils to adopt them - however, South Tyneside Council said they would expect motorists to “give consideration” to all road and pavement users and that it was a question of “common sense.”

The vehicles I’ve seen haven’t just put two wheels up onto the pavement, they’ve parked right across it.

Resident

The resident said: “It’s bad enough people having to dodge illegal cycling on footpaths without people with buggies and wheelchairs having to go onto roads.

“The vehicles I’ve seen haven’t just put two wheels up onto the pavement, they’ve parked right across it.

“The police and the council need to do more to make sure this doesn’t happen. You’ve got mothers with babies in pushchairs being forced out onto the road to get passed - it’s only a matter of time before someone is hurt.”

A South Tyneside Council spokeswoman said: “Pavement parking is inconsiderate and hazardous, particularly for those with visual impairments, wheelchair users and those with prams or pushchairs.

A van parked on the pavement near to the Alum House

A van parked on the pavement near to the Alum House

“Our Civil Enforcement Officers carry out regular patrols in these areas and can only issue fines to drivers where they are in contravention of existing restrictions, such as parking on yellow lines.

“We also work positively with the police on isolated incidents where parking on the pavement is causing an obstruction.”

In relation to the proposed new laws, she added: “As with everything it is a question of common sense. We appreciate that it is sometimes impossible to avoid parking with two wheels on the pavement.

“On narrow streets sometimes parking fully on the road could prevent other traffic getting through. What we expect is that motorists give consideration for all road and pavement users and ensure that they do not obstruct the pavement.

“Whilst new powers would help us tackle unruly motorists who may be flouting the rules, this is not currently a major issue for us.”