OBSTACLE COURSE: Dave Moran navigates Arthur St in Grafton.
OBSTACLE COURSE: Dave Moran navigates Arthur St in Grafton. Ebony Stansfield

This is why you shouldn't park over footpaths

YOU MAY not realise it, but a careless mistake like parking your car over a footpath can impact people with vision impairment.

Clarence Valley Access Committee member Dave Moran, who is legally blind, said pathways can become a lot more difficult than what it should be.

Mr Moran, who regularly walks Arthur St to Grafton Base hospital said he experienced cars parked onto the footpath or protruding onto the narrow footpath from their towbars.

He said being mindful to leave a footpath clear made a difference to somebody with mobility issues.

He said if something was sticking out and he could not feel it with his cane, and might walk into it.

"It just makes life that much harder getting around when it doesn't have to be,” he said.

"To me it just comes down to a little bit of consideration 'oh I'm sticking out over the footpath, I'll just move forward a little bit',” he said.

He said you get vehicles reversing the whole way until the wheels hit the gutter and then if its a tray back the tray sticks well over the footpath or plumbing gear and leaders.

His experience of tripping over a tow-bar hanging over a footpath illustrated the danger these obstacles posed for people with vision impairment.

But the issue isn't just on Arthur St, it's in Grafton CBD, the side streets and nearly everywhere.

He doesn't have an answer is other than asking people to just a bit more mindful of where their car is in position and keep the footpaths clear.

Radio personality Phil "PK” Kennedy, who has spent most of his life legally blind, said some cars in town park longways along the footpath.

"It can be a major issue if we have to walk into the road to walk around it,” he said.

Fortunately, his guide dog Wanda, takes him around anything that could be sticking out.

However, at times they find when there are fence lines people park on the grass, pull up right to the fence and don't leave room to get through.

"People don't think when they block footpaths or park across footpaths, when they don't do a lot of walking,” he said.

The Roads and Maritime Services website states in the general parking rules you must not stop your vehicle on footpaths and nature strips. 

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