App May Help Nab Handicap Parking Violators

27 Oct

From Disability Scoop: App May Help Nab Handicap Parking Violators.

A smartphone app may soon be all that’s needed to crack down on illegal parking in handicap spots.

Officials in Austin, Texas are set to vote this week on a resolution that would allow residents to use an app to report handicap parking violators directly to law enforcement.

Under the plan, app users would take a photo of the offending vehicle and submit it to city officials who could send an officer to issue a ticket.

“The only way we’re going to be able to address the problem is if we enlist help from ordinary citizens,” Austin City Councilman Chris Riley told the Austin American-Statesman. To read more click here.

I bring this up because it is a bit of a pet peeve for me. There is a strip mall near where I live where I have often seen people parking in the handicap spot in violation of the law. The strange things I have noticed (in my small sampling, and totally anecdotal experience):

They are almost always SUV’s. Yes, those rugged outdoors people can’t walk the extra 10 feet from a different spot.

I see them in the early morning, when the parking lot is basically empty and other spots are, quite literally, only 10 feet away.

They are in front of the donut shop. Probably has something to do with the early morning times I spot them, but I always find the SUV/donut shop/not wanting to walk an extra 10 feet combination to be highly ironic.

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3 Responses to “App May Help Nab Handicap Parking Violators”

  1. Mrs. W October 29, 2011 at 05:57 #

    Hi! I just wanted to comment on this because I kind of recognized myself in it.

    See, I drive an SUV. I do it because vehicle travel flares my illness and so far that vehicle is one I can tolerate for a longer time. On my bad days (and only; usually it remains hidden in the glove box) I use my handicapped parking placard and park in handicapped parking. Often God is good and the one normal space right next to them is open and I get to skip the placard part.

    I’m just letting you know (I DO have a placard). I’m one of those “don’t look sick people,” and except for walking rather slow and usually clinging for dear life to the shopping cart on my too proud for the electric cart days, you might guess I was perfectly normal.

    That being said – if they have no placard – BUST them. On days in the beginning of the month when I feel unwell there is almost NEVER a handicapped space – sometimes we need to be sure the right people get access. 🙂

  2. Chris October 29, 2011 at 06:58 #

    I understand Mrs. W. Some people have invisible disabilities, and they need the placard. I know some of those people, often they have heart conditions that limit the distance they can walk, or have been injured so that they cannot walk very far (even though at first glance their gait seems normal, but observe a bit longer and you will see a difference).

    While it was frustrating that there was only “handicapped” or “valet” parking available at the hospital garage today, I did find parking on the street nearby. Since it took me less than fifteen minutes to drive all the way down and back again I was not charged for parking. The only reason that I tried the parking garage was to place less parking burden on the neighborhood.

  3. clubduvet October 29, 2011 at 10:26 #

    This is a great idea which hopefully will make it’s way to the UK, because (although I can’t speak for the whole country) where I live, the blatant misuse of these spaces by people is appalling (and not just by youths – or youfs as they call themselves – but by all manner of people).

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