2,000 drivers hit by fines in Hartlepool - crackdown targeted dangerous and illegal parking near schools

Drivers parking dangerously or illegally near schools are among those hit by more than 2,000 parking fines in six months in Hartlepool, new figures show.

Monday, 6th January 2020, 4:45 pm
Updated Wednesday, 8th January 2020, 4:30 pm

Council chiefs said a total of 2,329 parking notices were issued in a period stretching from June and November, with many drivers hit as part of Operation Roadrunner.

The operation ran for two weeks in November and focused on cracking down on dangerous and illegal parking at schools in the town, according to a report from council director of regeneration and neighbourhoods Denise McGuckin.

She said: “As part of the operation the civil enforcement team, with the support of neighbourhood police officers, carried out regular patrols around the Fens, Eldon Grove, St John Vianney, St Theresa’s, West Park, and Jesmond Road Primary Schools to safeguard children by preventing and challenging illegal and dangerous parking.

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“This resulted in a number of parents being spoken to about their parking, and a number of parents being issued with penalty charge notices.”

Other work included 34 vehicles removed due to being abandoned or untaxed, four evictions of illegal encampment from industrial estates and public car parks, and four dispersal orders.

The figures came to light in the latest report on the work of the Neighbourhood Safety Group, a subgroup of the Safer Hartlepool Partnership, which works to create safer, stronger neighbourhoods across the town.

The report, detailing the activity carried out by the group from June to November, is to go before the Safer Hartlepool Partnership meeting later this week.

Statistics show the neighbourhood safety group has supported 96 victims of crime and antisocial behaviour through the Hartlepool Victims Service during that time.

In total 907 young people were engaged with as part of a town wide programme which included on-street interventions, safeguarding and challenging and reporting anti-social behaviour.

Other activity includes issuing 28 environmental fixed penalty notices during the period for dog fouling, dogs off leads, fly-tipping, smoking offences, and littering.

It was previously stated at a Hartlepool Borough Council meeting last year in 2018 just 13 fines were issued for littering and zero for dog fouling.

Council chiefs said changes to the legislation to fine litter louts and irresponsible dog owners affected the number of fines dealt out in 2018.

The team has also secured 37 acceptable behaviour agreements, voluntary pacts with young people to address issues of antisocial behaviour.

Several court orders have been issued due to the work of the team, with two criminal behaviour orders granted to tackle alcohol misuse and disorder in the town centre, and 13 premise closure orders due to drug dealing and antisocial behaviour.

Two ‘Days of Action’ have been carried out by Hartlepool Community Safety Team which covered the 15 streets bounded by Oxford Road, Shrewsbury Street, Cornwall Street, and Stockton Road.

Action in this area was undertaken as a result of complaints from local residents, councillors, and partner organisations, and aimed to tackle a number of crime and antisocial behaviour issues in the area.

Operations have also been taking place in the town to tackle issues such as drug dealing (Operation Grantham) and there has also been the Elizabeth Way Shopping Parade operation, looking to tackle crime, harassment and anti-social behaviour.

The report will be discussed at the Safer Hartlepool Partnership meeting at 2pm on Friday.