UK neighbours admit to parking wars

UK neighbours admit to parking wars
Gripes around the “sensitive” issue of parking have been laid bare in a new RAC survey, which suggests many drivers are not prepared to love thy neighbour.

It appears ‘cold wars’ are in progress up and down the country’s residential areas, with as many as 14% of drivers describing their neighbours’ parking habits as ‘poor’ or ‘appalling’.

Worryingly, almost half of those in this camp have resorted to retaliation tactics in a bid to give thoughtless parkers a taste of their own medicine.

READ MORE: Unclear indicating ‘most irritating road habit’

The RAC Insurance Home Parking Survey reminds us that parking and its various aspects remains a prickly topic for most drivers.

Last month a report from the Local Government Ombudsman for England suggested that challenges to parking fines are all too often rejected without fair consideration.

Further issues exist around everything from the cost, availability and even size of parking spaces. But it seems that perceptions of other drivers’ parking skills could potentially be behind the biggest bugbear.

The selfish way in which their neighbours park emerged as the chief gripe of 62% of the disgruntled group of respondents.

Just over two-thirds (41%) lodged their annoyance at the way people use the street for parking despite having a driveway, while 31% have been blocked in as a result. Drivers also take issue with parked cars being left poking out over the kerb (27%).

IN OTHER NEWS: Westminster to trial 50% parking hike for diesel drivers

For a huge 73% of the ‘appalling and poor’ respondents, this parking ill-behaviour happens every day – and for a quarter has even led to personal rows.

In the most severe cases, payback parkers are leaving their vehicles right up against a neighbour’s car in a deliberate attempt to make it difficult for them to get out.

Simon Williams, spokesman for RAC Insurance, believes parking has the ability to bring out the ‘Nimby’ in everyone.

“The moment someone parks selfishly people’s hackles are going to be raised, whether that’s parking in the street when they have the space to be able to park on their own drive or parking so close that it makes it almost impossible to get out,” he said.

“The overwhelming majority of people we surveyed described themselves as considerate parkers claiming they always leave plenty of space when they parallel park in the street and are careful to make sure they park squarely between the lines in a car park.

“These people are inevitably going to be far more sensitive to their neighbours’ parking habits and, if these poor practices recur on a daily basis, a ‘cold war’ might begin with neighbours not speaking or blatantly ignoring one another. And this can easily escalate into a full-on argument and all-out ‘Neighbours at War’ television scenario.

“The answer has to be for every motorist to take a little bit of extra time to think about how their parking might affect their neighbours and fellow drivers.”

Copyright Press Association 2017. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.