Scotland Introduces New Pavement Parking Laws and Fines

Scotland is currently undergoing a series of reforms with regard to parking pavement laws, and the area of Midlothian is now the latest to join the trend, following Edinburgh in introducing new rules and fines for anybody found to be parking on the pavement at a given point.

New Rules

As of April 1, motorists can be fined up to £100 if they are breaking any of the rules regarding parking. They are not allowed to park on any of the pavement areas, or on dropped kerb, or double parking.

Dianne Alexander is a Midlothian councillor, and had this to offer:

"Every motorist needs to take heed and park considerately so as not to obstruct roads and pavements. Our pavements are for pedestrians, not cars. If you cannot find a parking space other than by parking on a pavement, dropped kerb or double parking, the message is clear – park elsewhere or face a fine of £100."

Understanding the Change

The change first came in when the Transport Act 2019 was passed in Scotland. A section of the law gave power to the local authorities for the express intention of stopping people from parking on pavements, dropped kerbs, or double-parking in public areas.

Furthermore, a report was published by the Midlothian Council, which has basically said that these powers have become available to use since December 2023, which was when the Parking Prohibitions(Enforcement and Accounts) (Scotland) Regulations 2023 first came into play.

How Will This Affect People?

Naturally, the goal will be to try and dissuade people from parking in places where they shouldn’t. Delivering fines seems to be the only way to get a real handle on the problem because for most people, it’s often not enough of a deterrent when it is simply just the threat of a fine.

The measures have already been implemented in other places like Edinburgh and they have seemed to have been effective. Naturally, it is important to understand that you are not parking on any pavements, or dropped kerbs, which are visible to motorists. Ignorance will not be a defence in this case, so it’s important to make sure that motorists are being careful otherwise they will be subject to fines. However, perhaps this is necessary.

Strict sanctions are often annoying for some when they come in, but there is no denying that they can be an effective way of creating change. After all, it is important to keep public areas safe from harm, and this can be a bit of a challenge when motorists aren’t given enough sanctions for breaking rules.

With any luck the new rules will be in place for a while to come and will make a real difference to the way that people use the roads. Pavement parking is an annoyance and we can only hope that with a bit of time and change it can be stamped out for good. Hopefully other parts of Scotland will follow suit.