POLICE will be targeting illegally parked vehicles in Bridlington town centre.
Starting next week in an operation nicknamed Yellow Peril, officers, PCSOs and specials will be slapping yellow parking tickets of £30 or £60 on cars and other vehicles in known illegal parking hotspots.
PC Chris Prendergast, of Bridlington police, said Esplanade, King Street’s pedestrianised area, Chapel Street and Promenade were top of the list, and other locations had also been highlighted by members of the public and businesses.
“Parking is becoming a nightmare in the town. Chapel Street is particularly bad, once one parks illegally other people follow”, said PC Prendergast.
“Esplanade is also a problem, especially late night on Fridays and Saturdays. In both cases they hamper access by emergency vehicles and police.”
Operation Yellow Peril will be catching people who illegally park on double yellow lines, loading bays and pedestrian areas.
In most instances it will be a £30 fixed penalty fine, but for some other offences, such as parking within the zig-zag lines either side of pedestrian crossings it can be a £60 fine which also means three points on a driver’s licence.
The purge does not cover off-street parking, which is the responsibility of East Riding of Yorkshire Council.
Bridlington’s last Humberside Police traffic warden retired in March.
None of them have been replaced in the run up to October, when parking regulation enforcement will become the responsibility of East Riding of Yorkshire Council.
According to PC Prendergast, police officers and PCSOs have filled the void in providing traffic management control.
He said: “Due to the demands already placed on police officers and PCSOs, general opportunities for conducting traffic management have been scarce and this has resulted in an increase in calls to police regarding complaints of parking in the town.”
And it seems locals are worse than visitors.
“I would say the majority of culprits are local people who think they might get away with it. Visitors, who do not know the town well, would not dare,” said PC Prendergast.
Police illegal parking patrols will be stepped up both during the day and evening
“As complaints have been received, positive action will be taken against those committing offences, this is giving notice to all motorists that they face receiving fixed penalty fines should they park in an illegal manner”.
The campaign will run for the next couple of months during the run up to the take over of parking enforcement by the council.
From October its present nine parking wardens who police off street and parking zone areas, will be increased to 11 operating on a beat patrol basis to issue Penalty Charge Notices carrying a £60 fine.
Police will still deal with criminal matters such as speeding or those which are endorsable offences such as parking on zig zag lines at a pedestrian crossing,
A council spokesman said: “When Humberside Police made it clear they were unable to continue with parking control across the region due to the need to carry out their statutory obligations, the council – which is responsible for keeping the roads free and safe – had to take on Civil Parking Enforcement powers.”
The authority is also responsible for ensuring access for emergency vehicles.
“We are also aware illegally parked vehicles can affect the commercial viability of a town centre and present a danger to pedestrians crossing the road,” said the spokesman.