12 million drivers park where they shouldn’t

17th August 2016

  • Nearly 12 million drivers admit to parking where they shouldn’t in the last 12 months
  • In the last year fines worth over £80 million have been handed out as a result
  • More than 2 million drivers admit to parking in disabled bays and mother and baby spaces
  • The public believe people who park in prohibited spaces should receive points on their licence

New research1 from Churchill Car Insurance reveals that nearly 12 million (31 per cent) drivers have parked in spaces where they are not eligible to park, in the last 12 months. The most common prohibited places people park are on double yellow (8 per cent) and single yellow lines (7 per cent).

A staggering £80 million worth of fines have been handed out to 1.8 million drivers who have parked in a prohibited spot in the last 12 months alone (15 per cent)2. The average value of a fine for parking in the wrong place is £45.

More than 2 million drivers (6 per cent) admit to parking in disabled bays and when asked why, nearly a third (30 per cent) said ‘it was only for a short time so I didn’t think it would matter’.

Another 2 million drivers (5 per cent) have parked in dedicated mother and baby spaces with the main reason being ‘it was the only available space to park’. Some drivers, however, admit parking in both disabled bays (12 per cent) and mother and baby spaces (11 per cent) simply because it was the most convenient place for them.

Table one: Top ten places people park where they shouldn’t

Rank Un-permitted place to park Percentage
1 Double yellow lines 8%
2 Single yellow line when not permitted 7%
3 Disabled parking bay 6%
4 Loading bay/area when not permitted 5%
5 Allocated residential parking space 5%
6 Dedicated mother and baby space 5%
7 Business space (allocated for firm not visiting or working for) 4%
8 Permit holders only parking space 4%
9 Doctors’ surgery car park 3%
10 School zone 2%

Source: Churchill Car Insurance 2016

When asked why they parked in the wrong place, nearly a quarter (23 per cent) said ‘it was only for a short time so I didn’t think it would matter’, while a fifth (21 per cent) claimed it was the only available space to park in.

Table two: Reasons given for parking in un-permitted places

Rank Reason given Percentage
1 It was only for a short time so I didn’t think it would matter 23%
2 It was the only available space to park 21%
3 I was in a rush 13%
4 It was most convenient 10%
5 I didn’t realise I had parked in the wrong place 9%
6 There were plenty of other spaces available so I didn’t think it would matter 8%
7 I think I should be able to park where I like 8%

Source: Churchill Car Insurance 2016

Unsurprisingly, drivers who park where they are not meant to spark a strong reaction from other people. Nearly one in ten drivers parking in un-permitted places (8 per cent) have returned to find their car damaged or have entered into a verbal altercation with another driver or pedestrian.

Steve Barrett, head of car insurance at Churchill commented: “Bays dedicated to disabled drivers or parents with children are there to make life easier for those who may struggle with accessibility and parking in these bays when not eligible is extremely selfish. It may seem worth the risk to chance parking in a restricted area but with fines averaging £45, that five minute rush into a shop for a newspaper could end up being very costly. More importantly, we encourage motorists to be considerate to each other.”

The majority of UK adults (79 per cent) believe those parking in un-permitted places should receive points on their licence. Parking in emergency vehicle parking spaces (59 per cent) and disabled parking bays (52 per cent) are the top two restricted places which people believe should result in penalty points.

Notes to editors

  1. Research conducted by Opinium Research with a representative sample of 2007 UK adults between 27 ‐ 31 May 2016. 12 million figure based on 31 per cent of drivers parking in un-permitted places. 31 per cent of 38,048,580 UK drivers = 11,769,694.
  2. 15 per cent of those who have parked in a prohibited spot in the last 12 months

For further information, please contact:

Antonia Green
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Tel: 0207 282 2967
Email: Antonia.green@citigatedr.co.uk

Chloe French
PR Manager
Direct Line Group
Tel: 01651 831 715
Email: Chloe.French@directlinegroup.co.uk>

Churchill

Founded in 1989, Churchill is now one of the UK’s leading providers of general insurance, offering car, home, travel and pet insurance cover over the phone or on-line.

Churchill general insurance policies are underwritten by U K Insurance Limited, Registered office: The Wharf, Neville Street, Leeds LS1 4AZ. Registered in England and Wales No 1179980. U K Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

Churchill and U K Insurance Limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc.

Customers can find out more about Churchill products or get a quote by calling 0300 200300 or visiting www.churchill.com