New Parking Rules Start In Portsmouth

Owners of caravans who leave them parked on Portsmouth streets are being warned: Your property could get crushed.

Caravans can take up valuable parking space on residential roads, so Portsmouth City Council has launched a crackdown designed to remove them. The crackdown also applies to trailers and boats.

The council has already removed and crushed one burnt-out caravan that was left on a city street for months on end.

The caravan, left in New Road, was destroyed at Silverlake breaker's yard, Shedfield, after residents reported it had been parked on the street for months. The owner failed to respond to a warning notice, and will be pursued by the council for the cost of disposal.

Under the new crackdown, the council can put a legal notice on the property, warning that if it isn't removed in 28 days, it will be taken into storage. To reclaim it means paying a fee, starting at £60 for removal, with storage costs from £7.14 per day.

If property is not reclaimed after 14 days, it will be disposed of - either by selling it or having it destroyed.

Martin Lavers, an assistant head of transport at the council, said: "Parking spaces can be hard to find on our streets, and we're trying to make life easier for residents who want to park their cars. 

"It's not right that valuable parking space is taken up by caravans, boats or trailers.

"If they're left on the street, then we won't hesitate to take action."

The council is asking owners of caravans, trailers and boats to remember these points:

* If you don't have suitable parking at home, then find a storage compound.  

* If you need to park on the street to unload or load, limit this to one day and park outside your house. Tell your neighbours what you're doing. Make sure the caravan or trailer is stable, with hazards removed and gas bottles isolated.

* Don't carry out repairs or maintenance on the street.

* Don't allow people to live in a caravan or run cables across the street.

* It's against the law to park a caravan or trailer on the street at night without warning lights. Ensure reflectors face oncoming traffic.

* Check your caravan or trailer is covered by insurance when parked on the street.