Nov 03, 2023

Older man’s fury at disability parking spot insensitivity

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The 71-year-old reported the incident to the local council and police. [Source: Instagram]

An older Sydney man who uses a walking frame has taken to social media to blow off steam about a “selfish” driver’s antics at a shopping centre car park. 

John Laine, 71, had parked his car in a disabled parking spot in the Campbelltown Mall car park and entered the centre to do some shopping. When he returned, he found another car parked between his vehicle and another car in the adjoining disabled space.

Mr Laine shared photos on Instagram of the act that showed the offending car – which had a parking permit – parked over the dividing line between the two spaces. 

“They would be fully aware of the reason these spaces are wide … and it isn’t so an extra car can park there,” he wrote in his Instagram caption.

Speaking with Yahoo News Australia, he said “When I came back the other two cars were there and what annoyed me was the fact that the first white car next to me was actually on the dividing line between those two parking bays.” 

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The image posted by Mr Laine. [Source: Instagram]

Mr Laine claims he reported the incident to Campbelltown Council and police but they said it was an issue to be sorted out by the shopping centre. At the time of publishing, the Campbelltown Mall had not yet responded. 

Disability activist and award-winning safety speaker James Wood said this incident is an unfortunately common occurrence, claiming he once waited three hours for another driver to come out of a shopping centre to move their car after they parked their vehicle in between two disabled parking spots. 

“The car had parked in between me and another car in a wheelchair spot … I tried to get the shopping centre to announce the number plate information but there was no response. I waited for nearly three hours for this person to come out,” Mr Wood also told Yahoo News.

The NSW Road Rules Act 2014 states anyone who parks illegally in a disabled parking space faces an on-the-spot fine of $581 and one demerit point.

Offenders could also face fines of up to $2,200 if they choose to contest the penalty in local court. 

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