Warning issued to Larne blue badge holders

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A Larne pensioner has urged blue badge holders to brush up on their rights in a bid to avoid being caught out by parking fines.

Badge holder Hugh Whiteside was issued with a £90 penalty after parking his vehicle on double yellow lines at Point Street in the town.

His wife Sharon told the Times: “We regularly meet our friends for a bite to eat in a local cafe and have been parking in the same spot for a number of years without ever receiving a ticket.

“It was our understanding that, as long as you are not causing an obstruction, blue badge holders are permitted to park on double yellow lines. But the traffic warden who issued the ticket told us that you have to be parked at least 15m away from a junction, which we were not.

“We subsequently checked out the guidelines and discovered that is indeed the case. What I can’t understand is why we only received a ticket on this occasion, when countless times in the past traffic wardens have noticed our car parked there and done nothing.

“I know a number of other blue badge holders who were under the same impression as us, and I just want to warn people to be aware of the regulations so this does not happen to them as well.”

A spokesperson for Department of Regional Development said: “If anyone believes a penalty charge notice has been issued incorrectly they should submit a challenge following the instructions displayed on the rear side of the ticket.”

The blue badge scheme provides on-street parking concessions for badge holders who travel either as drivers or passengers. For further information on the scheme visit www.nidirect.gov.uk/blue-badge-scheme-a-guide-for-badge-holders