DRIVERS need to be careful about where they park or they could face fines of up to £100.
It's not only watching out for where you park, including whether you've pulled up in a pay to park garage or you're out on the curbside, but you need to keep an eye out for exactly how you park in the space or you could be caught out.
One driver was met with that exact penalty as he was slapped with a £100 parking fine because his tyre was one inch over the marked bay.
We've all probably been guilty of it, but it does take a degree of skill to get your car perfectly aligned within the white lines marked on the ground.
Especially as Brits hit the shops en mass for the January sales, filling up the car parks for every space available.
If you fail to park correctly though you could be hit with fine for obstructing other vehicles or access for pedestrians and more.
So make sure you're clued up before you leave your car parked up, or you could be forking out heavy amounts.
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Do I have to be within the white bay lines?
If you're in an official car park, spaces will usually be marked on the ground.
You've got to park within these or you could face a fine.
Drivers have been fined as much as £100 on numerous occasions, even when their car has been just hairs off the limit of the line.
So it's important to be as accurate as you can.
When you pull up into a bay you should always make sure your vehicle is suitable for the space too.
Not only in size, but if you've not got children on board then you shouldn't park in parent bays, and the same goes for disabled badge holders – without you should avoid parking in a disabled space.
The AA says to "make sure you read the signs carefully, park within a bay and buy a ticket to cover the length of your stay," so you're not caught short.
What else do I consider when parking?
You need to make a note of how long you can park in a certain area for as well.
While most supermarkets let you park completely free of charge, there will usually betime limit for how long you can stay.
You should never park on double yellow lines as the Highway Code says that they “indicate a prohibition of waiting at any time even if there are no upright signs.”
Single yellow lines come with their own rules though.
They usually mean no waiting or parking for specific times in the day, but it can vary on the area so always check the parking signs.
You can usually stop to drop off or pick up passengers unless the sign says otherwise.
There are a number of other places you absolutely cannot park and those include:
- the carriageway or the hard shoulder of a motorway except in an emergency
- a pedestrian crossing
- taxi bays
- a tram or cycle lane during its period of operation
- a cycle track
- red lines, in the case of specially designated ‘red routes’, unless otherwise indicated by signs
What if I park somewhere I shouldn’t?
You'll get a Penalty Charge Notice if you park somewhere you shouldn't.
They're issued by Civil Enforcement Officers but they can vary in price.
There's no fixed amount, and the cost depends on where you get your ticket.
For example, parking tickets will usually be more expensive in London than anywhere else.
You get 28 days to pay the fine, but if you pay within the first 14 days the amount due can usually be halved.
If it's privately owned land though, which can be the case in many car parks, you'll receive a Parking Charge Notice.
These are set by the land owner so they can vary from standard fines, so if you don't want to get caught paying more, make sur eyou read all the signs before you lock up and leave your car.
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