Trial to improve conditions for disabled drivers

New technology that could eliminate the issue of inconsiderate drivers parking in disabled bays is being trialled by Westminster Council.

The trial, which is being carried out in partnership with Smart Parking, means that disabled drivers can be issued with electronic permits, known as EPermits or RFID tags, which communicate with sensors in the road.

How it works - diagramShould a car without a tag park in a disabled bay with a sensor illegally, nearby traffic marshals will be alerted so that they could go to the site and ask the driver to move on. They also have the power to issue a fine as a last resort.

Cllr Heather Acton, Westminster City Council cabinet member for parking, said: “Parking in a disabled bay must be one of the most inconsiderate things a driver can do – yet we still see it very regularly in Westminster.

“We hope this new technology will put an end to this poor practice and help improve the day to day lives of disabled drivers in the city.”

Paul Gillespie, Smart Parking’s group chief executive officer, added: “We are delighted to be collaborating with Westminster City Council and Transport for London in the launch of the EPermit pilot – a world first.

“This new technology will help to eliminate misuse of disabled parking bays broadening Westminster City Council’s commitment to providing fairer, easier, parking.”

The pilot project is set to last around eight weeks, and evaluation will be carried out before a decision will be made on a citywide roll out.

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