The Road Safety Authority (RSA) and the Gardai are supporting the Disability Federation of Ireland’s ‘Make Way Day’ today (September 24) with a campaign highlighting illegal parking on footpaths and cycle lanes.

The campaign reminds drivers that parking on footpaths and blocking cycle lanes is an offence and poses a road safety risk to vulnerable road users.

Supporting ‘Make Way Day’, Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Galway’s Hildegarde Naughton, says illegal parking forces wheelchair users, the visually impaired, people with buggies, children and older pedestrians who do not have adequate room to walk safely on footpaths out onto the road. Illegal parking in cycle lanes forces cyclists out into mainstream traffic, where there is an increased risk of a collision occurring.

Chief Superintendent Michael Hennebry, Garda National Roads Policing Bureau says while most local authorities employ traffic wardens to enforce parking regulations and issue fines, members of An Garda Síochána also have this authority. In addition to fixed charges for breaching parking regulations, a driver can also be liable for penalty points.

If a driver has parked in a dangerous position, they could incur penalty points up to a maximum of 5 on conviction and a ‘fixed charge’ ranging from €80 - €120. Driving in a ‘mandatory’ cycle lane is also an offence which can incur up to a maximum of 3 penalty points on conviction and a ‘fixed charge’ ranging from €60 - €90.

The President has asked citizens to take photos of any blocked footpaths and post them online.

President Michael D Higgins says the nation should allow everyone, no matter who they are, to take part in society…