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DRD ‘clamps’ down on parking

The number of vehicles being clamped in North Down for misuse of disabled parking bays is on the increase, according to the Department of Regional Development (DRD).

Figures released by the department following an Assembly question by North Down MLA Peter Weir revealed that the number of vehicles clamped in Bangor increased by 89 from 172 in 2007/08 to 261 in 2009/10.

In Holywood, figures showed a rise of 16 from 14 in 200/07 to 30 in 2009/10.

Mr Weir welcomed the clampdown on those misusing the disabled parking bays and added: “This is of course a double edged sword and could indicate a greater attempted abuse of the system, but I hope it shows that in terms of enforcement there is a more pro-active approach being taken.

“Some may dismiss this as harmless, but these are people who are taking advantage of the vast majority of motorists who obey the law, and are committing a fraud at the expense of others.

“Moreover it can prevent a disabled person being able to obtain a parking space that it is rightfully theirs. These figures show that those who try and steal parking spaces from the disabled will not be let away with it.”

A spokeswoman for Roads Service said: “Traffic attendants will continue to give out parking tickets to drivers who illegally park in disabled parking bays.

“Roads Service would urge drivers to leave disabled bays for blue badge holders only.”

Belfast Telegraph