Disabled suffer due to road rule

Civic Offices
Civic Offices

AN ELDERLY and disabled woman was made to struggle down a busy high street on walking sticks after the taxi she had ordered was told to move on by wardens.

The woman, who has recently had a hip replacement, had ordered a taxi to take her into Queensway, Bletchley on Friday morning.

When she got there the driver dropped her, as requested, close to the Lloyds TSB.

However, as he pulled up he was told he would have to move on or face getting a ticket and a £30 fine.

He drove on and less than an hour later another driver arrived for the return journey to find the woman standing, supported by her crutches, close to the bank.

Despite explaining that the woman struggled to walk more than a few feet the driver was alledgedly told ‘do what you like but you’ll get a ticket’.

Gavin Sokhi, from Skyline Taxis, the company which took the booking, said: “If you are sat for more than five minutes blocking traffic then I can see the problem but this is a matter of seconds so a disabled customer can get out easier.

“One of the drivers actually asked the warden how they would feel if it was their mum that was struggling.

“Surely they don’t want to turn business away from Queensway?”

But both the town council and Milton Keynes Council backed the restrictions.

A Bletchley and Fenny Stratford town council spokesman said: “There have been a number of parking complaints from the general public about dangerous and illegal parking in Queensway.

“The town council supports the parking enforcements in Queensway as illegal parking is a nuisance, causes an obstruction and can be dangerous.

“There is lots of parking in Bletchley, over 1,000 free spaces and 300 low cost pay and display, and shoppers are encouraged to use these. This is just the parking in the immediate vicinity of Queensway and does not include on street parking in nearby residential areas.

“Unfortunately some shoppers park on double yellow lines and leave their cars parked there for some considerable time.”

And a spokesman for Milton Keynes Council, which manages the wardens, said: “The restriction is not just a normal double yellow line restriction – as this would actually allow people to stop to pick up and drop off for five minutes.

“The restriction in place is a no waiting or loading at any time restriction – this basically prohibits stopping at all, similar to double red lines in London.

“This restriction is in place as it is deemed dangerous to stop at certain spots and this is the key issue here, it is actually hazardous to block this part of the road.

“This is one of the few restrictions that disabled badges do not exempt the motorist or passenger from, demonstrating its gravity.”