Norfolk County Council gets tough on blue badge misuse
Norfolk County Council is cracking down on blue badge misuse in West Norfolk.
The council has led 82 investigations into suspected blue badge misuse and made four prosecutions across Norfolk since announcing their crackdown last year.
Blue badges enable disabled drivers and passengers to park closer to their destination, and Norfolk County Council aims to remind people to “check they are using their blue badges correctly to make sure vital parking spaces remain available for those who need them most”.
Norfolk County Council’s blue badge investigator Jim Blake said: “We’ve found that the vast majority of people are using their blue badge correctly and my aim is to support all these people who are doing the right thing.
“I’ve seen a few common errors over the past year which the team have reminded people not to do again such as someone using an expired badge when they would qualify for a new badge, and failing to return an expired badge.”
The council’s prosecutions all involved people parking on yellow lines or in disabled bays and displaying a blue badge when the badge holder was not present.
He added: “The people prosecuted have made a decision to take advantage of a blue badge that isn’t theirs and which they don’t need.
“I hope these successful prosecutions will help to remind others not to break the law in the same way.
“Remember if you believe you’ve seen someone using a blue badge fraudulently please do let us know.”
Norfolk County Council is advising blue badge holders to check expiry dates, apply to renew badges in good time, return expired badges and clearly display their badge.
They say badge holders can use their badge in any vehicle they are travelling in but must ensure all information on it is visible.
Chairman of Norfolk County Council’s environment, development and transport committee, Martin Wilby said: “The prosecutions send a clear message that blue badge misuse is wrong and we stand with blue badge holders whose lifeline can be taken away by people breaking the law.
“It’s thankfully just a small number of people who choose to misuse a blue badge but sadly this is not a victimless crime. So we will continue to ask people to proudly show us your badge if asked by a parking enforcement officer.”
as this helps us to make sure people stay within the law.”