Park Smart to promote safety at school gates

Community warden Ian Kennedy, councillor Anne Allan who is a member of the Buchan Community Safety Group, with staff and pupils from around Peterhead
Community warden Ian Kennedy, councillor Anne Allan who is a member of the Buchan Community Safety Group, with staff and pupils from around Peterhead
  • Aims to tackle irresponsible parking outside Aberdeenshire schools
  • Complaints regarding irresponsible parking are on the increase
  • Teachers, school users and members of the public have voiced concern

Aberdeenshire Council is addressing concerns over irresponsible parking at schools with its newly launched Park Smart campaign.

Police Scotland is supporting the project which aims to tackle potentially dangerous parking habits by educating road users and enforcing best practice.

Local Police will be running a specific enforcement operation in the near future to tackle the minority of parents who park irresponsibly.

Inspector Jamie Harrison, Formartine Community Policing team

Complaints regarding irresponsible parking are on the increase with teaching staff, school users and members of the public all voicing concern.

With one in five journeys to school made by car, the safety of pupils who choose to walk or cycle is being put unnecessarily at risk.

This in turn is putting families off allowing their children to walk or cycle to school on their own due to the dangers they could face at the school gate.

The Park Smart campaign aims to educate and enforce responsible parking around schools. It is currently being trialled at 16 Aberdeenshire schools.

It will also encourage people to think about how their decision to drive has an impact on others.

A package of initiatives is being made available to schools as part of the campaign, giving pupils the chance to get involved and help spread the word.

Police Scotland will carry out enforcement visits, providing a follow up on the promotional material.

The involvement and support from Police Scotland highlights the importance of the issue at hand, and has been welcomed by Aberdeenshire Council.

Inspector Jamie Harrison, from the Formartine Community Policing team will be heading up the Police operation, he said: “From engagement with local communities, dangerous and inconsiderate parking around schools is of enormous concern.

“My advice is that wherever possible, walk to school. If you have to drive then leave in plenty of time, ensure you park legally, safely and consider parking further from the school to avoid congestion.

“Local Police will be running a specific enforcement operation in the near future to tackle the minority of parents who park irresponsibly.”

Vice chairman of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, Councillor Alan S. Buchan, said: “Parents doing the school run need to be aware that their responsibility extends beyond their own child to other people’s children as well.”