UK Parking Laws

A frustration for tradespeople when arriving at any job can often be finding a place to park the van.

And with the number of parking fines received by drivers rising year-on-year, being aware of UK parking laws will help you to avoid a penalty.

UK Parking Laws

As important as finding a space is making sure that you won’t be hit with a parking ticket and knowing these 7 UK parking laws will help you avoid a fine.

1. Keep your licence plate visible

Allowing your vehicle to sit at the side of the road collecting dirt is illegal and should it get to the point where the licence plate can’t be read then expect a fine.

So make sure to keep your vehicle clean – you’ll also be giving a better impression to customers.

2. Don’t park in cycle lanes

Cycle lanes aren’t parking spaces and if you do park in one then, in the eyes of the law, you would be blocking a lane. Make sure to avoid any parts of the road with cycle lane markings

3. Leave side lights on

So that moving cars don’t crash into your vehicle overnight, if you’re parked in any of the following areas then you’ll need to leave your sidelights on:

  • Speed limit above 30 miles per hour
  • Facing away from traffic or not in a clearly signed parking area

4. Keep close to the curb

Parking any more than 50cm away from the curb is seen as hazardous and could see you facing a fine. Next time your parking on the roadside, make sure you’re hugging the curb but avoid riding up onto the path.

5. Stay away from junctions

If you’ve spotted a space at the end of the road then don’t go too excited as you’ll need to ensure that your vehicle will be at least 10 metres away from the junction. Any closer than 10 metres and your vehicle will become a hazard to passing cars.

6. Avoid private land

Parking on private land can result in the landowner contacting their local authority to remove or immobilise your vehicle. However, Freedoms Act 2012 prevents the landowner from removing or clamping the vehicle without lawful authority.

7. Never attempt to reserve a spot

If you’re going to be returning to a customer’s home the following day and had a challenge parking your car then avoid the temptation to try and save the space.

This could be using traffic cones, wheelie bins or any other object you can get your hands on. Blocking out a space on the road or in a car park will see you end up with a fine.

How much are parking fines?

Parking fines or penalty charge notices (PCN) are around £90 but can be as much as £100 for parking on private property.

In England and Wales, a PCN normally has to be paid within 28 days but the fine could be reduced if paid within 14 days. Charges are different in Scotland and Wales.

A record 6.8 million drivers were handed a fine for parking on private land during the 2018-19 fiscal year, a report from the RAC Foundation has found. And this number is expected to keep on rising with estimates standing at 9 million for the 2019-20 financial years.

Source: RAC Foundation

Parking on private land can be met with fines of up to £100 and with thousands of people being caught out you’ll want to make sure that you’re not one of them.

Fortunately, being aware of these 7 UK parking laws will help you to avoid picking up a fine in the future.

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