According to figures reported by the BBC, motorists in Wales have been fined over 14,000 times for abusing disabled parking spaces across the country.
The penalties were issued to drivers who parked on on-street, and in bays specifically reserved for blue badge users. While the figures have remained static for the last four years, the BBC reports that there has been a rise in the number of fines which have been issued to motorists who abuse disabled parking bays.
Last year, Cardiff issued a total of 3,100 fines, the largest of any council area, while Swansea issued 2,200 – a 158% rise of penalties issued in just four years. Denbinghshire issued the third largest number of penalties – 1,892 – but this figure was down by a quarter on the previous year.
Figures were supplied to the BBC by 15 of 22 councils in Wales that deal with their own parking enforcement. Swansea has its own enforcement team, who are working with the blue badge department to crack down on drivers misusing the bays.
Speaking with the BBC, councillor Mark Thomas of Swansea Council, said: “It’s getting everybody on-board with understanding…it’s not just a victimless offence or crime, it has deep, deep meaningful repercussions for people who hold blue badges.”