DERBYSHIRE firefighters and police have teamed up to highlight the potentially life-threatening dangers of illegal and dangerous parking.
Fire engines, led by town officers, staged a hard-hitting demonstration in Chesterfield town centre last Friday in a desperate bid to draw attention to the ongoing problem.
The fire engine, which drove down roads surrounding the Market Place, had to manoeuvre around a number of cars and was slowed by several illegally parked vehicles.
Steve Symonds, crew manager of Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Prevention Team, said: “Poorly parked vehicles cause traffic dangers, block streets, create congestion and risk lives by blocking the path of the emergency services.
“We’d ask people to think that if a fire occurred on their street, would we be able to get close enough to the fire to be able to save lives.”
Officers have been speaking to motorists and market traders in a bid to highlight the problems of illegal and dangerous parking around the town centre and they are issuing fixed penalty notices to those found flouting the law.
Community Safety Inspector Russ Dakin, from Derbyshire Police, advised: “Park in marked bays, don’t park on double yellow lines – and always ensure a gap of at least two-and-a-half metres, the width of a fire engine.
“The message is very clear – park responsibly and have some consideration for emergency vehicles.”
As part of the Derbyshire Times’ campaign Respect on the Roads, backed by leading figures in the three emergency services, we think it is time to expose parking pests. If you see a badly parked vehicle and, crucially, if it is safe to do so, take a picture and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org for an up-and-coming article on bad parking. Be assured we will hide registration plates.
l Don’t forget, you can pick up a fantastic car window sticker as part of our campaign, sponsored by Chesterfield-based car dealership firm Autoworld, now.
The free stickers can also be picked up at the Derbyshire Times’ reception, on Station Road, in Chesterfield, Chesterfield Tourist Information Centre, Chesterfield Library and Gymophobics. In addition, they are being handed out by staff at Chesterfield College and crews from Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service.
l If you would like to back our campaign, send your name, home town and, if you would like, why you’re pledging, to email@example.com, write to Respect on the Roads, 37 Station Road, Chesterfield, S41 7XD or via our website, Facebook or Twitter.