On-street parking enforcement will be gradually reinstated by Devon County Council from today (Monday 18 May).
Parking enforcement officers will initially be deployed to areas where issues with increasing numbers of visitors have been raised by communities, Police and local County Council members.
During this first week of returning to duty, penalty charge notices (PCNs) will NOT be issued. Instead, officers will be issuing warning notices to anyone flouting parking restrictions in on-street pay & display, limited waiting bays and residents’ parking areas, in order to allow drivers a grace period to get used to the resumption of enforcement.
These warning notices will make people aware that enforcement is recommencing, with penalty charges due to be re-introduced when “live” enforcement starts the following week, from Monday 25 May.
Officers will be patrolling central areas of local communities to maintain the availability of short stay on-street parking, and to ensure that drivers continue to park safely. The County Council will continue to monitor the situation in the coming weeks.
Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said: “With central Government encouraging some sectors back to work, and enabling people to travel more, we are starting to see increasing traffic levels on our roads. Some of our local communities, particularly coastal resorts, are calling for enforcement officers to help deal with parking issues that are arising from increased numbers of visitors, so we will be gradually scaling up our enforcement operations from this week.
“It will be a proportionate return, starting with only warning notices at first, to make people aware that ‘live’ enforcement will be scheduled to resume on pay and display, limited waiting bays and residents’ parking areas from Monday 25 May. While the pandemic continues, consideration will be provided via the appeals process, and should a driver receive a penalty charge notice, the impact of changing enforcement will be fully considered along with any other mitigation they may offer. We will also be considering some form of short-term permits for those continuing to have to work from home or self-isolate.”
Residents who are still required to work from home but have additional vehicles above their two residents’ parking permit allowance are asked to find more information via the County Council’s parking services webpage.
Care and health workers already benefit from the existing parking exemption scheme, and those with the ‘timeclock’ issued by the County Council can continue to park without time restriction in areas of limited waiting, residents’ parking, and on-street pay and display, as well as currently up to two hours on single and double yellow line ‘no waiting’ restrictions.
For care and health workers that do not have the ‘timeclock’ parking exemption, the County Council is extending its old permit scheme until Tuesday 30 June whereby a permit can be downloaded and printed for use in limited waiting, residents’ parking areas, on-street pay and display, but not on single or double yellow lines.
Devon County Council is already working closely with the RD&E Trust and has issued dispensation permits for key workers to park in areas of limited waiting, residents’ parking areas, and on-street pay and display near to the hospital. There is also an agreement from Exeter City Council enabling Trust staff to use these permits in their nearby off-street car parks. The national NHS parking pass, distributed by the NHS is also accepted, and NHS staff are encouraged to visit www.nhs-freeparking.co.uk.
Grace periods are continuing to be offered on expired residents’ permits until Tuesday 30 June.
Everyone using pay and display areas is asked to adhere to social distancing guidelines and are encouraged to pay for parking ‘hands free’ using the Phone and Pay app.
Anyone paying by cash at a parking meter is asked to ensure they use hand sanitiser before and after using the meter.
Although enforcement of on-street parking across Devon was temporarily relaxed near the end of March, ‘no waiting’ restrictions (including single yellow lines and double yellow lines) have had to be enforced throughout lockdown. They will continue to be enforced to enable clear access for emergency vehicles, care workers, food delivery and refuse collection.
Parking enforcement officers will continue to be instructed to follow social distancing rules and good hand hygiene. They will be deployed in vehicles in order to minimise social contact, but they will expect to spend more time patrolling on foot in areas where there is on-street parking.
For more information go to Devon County Council’s webpages.