Cracking down

Bonnie Learning
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Town, RCMP, to combine forces to combat illegal parking issue

Community Constable Cliff Sampson (left) and RCMP Sgt. Howard Fitzpatrick, want the public to know they will be stepping up enforcement of illegal parking in designated Mobility Impaired parking spaces around the community in the coming months.

The Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay and the RCMP are teaming up to crack down on illegal parking.

Last month, The Labradorian ran a story where some local residents were upset with the number of people they say are using Mobility Impaired parking spots around town without having the special permits visible in their vehicles.

Community Constable Cliff Sampson and RCMP Sgt. Howard Fitzpatrick say both police units will be stepping up enforcement to try to curb the issue.

“Officially, we have only had one report (to the detachment) on this matter, and I have personally been contacted one about this,” said Cst. Sampson.

“But that’s not to say it’s not happening.”

Sgt. Fitzpatrick believes the lack of official complaints to the RCMP stems from the fact a lot of people are taking their complaints directly to the business or office where they see illegal parking.

He also strongly encourages anyone who feels they may need a special parking permit to apply for one.

“There may be many people out there who have legitimate need to have a parking permit, but have never bothered to apply for one,” he noted. “It’s not a difficult process.”

The Services NL office — Motor Registration Division in Happy Valley-Goose Bay has forms available and are also available on the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador’s website, he said.

Cst. Sampson noted one simply has to fill out their personal information, have it checked over and signed by their doctor, and send it on to MRD in St. John’s for assessment.

“Mobility Impaired parking is there for a reason,” he said. “Someone shouldn’t have to walk 200 feet across a parking lot because someone else — who doesn’t have a permit — is illegally parked.”

Cst. Sampson noted checks will be done throughout the community, at businesses and office buildings.

“If we see a vehicle illegally parked in a Mobility Impaired space, it will be dealt with accordingly,” he said, noting fines start at $100.

“If someone sees a vehicle illegally parked, call the detachment and we will check it out,” added Sgt. Fitzpatrick.

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