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Britain's strangest van parking laws where owners can face thousands in fines



In a bid to help drivers avoid hefty fines and penalties, motoring experts have pinpointed some of Britain's lesser-known parking laws that van owners should be aware of. Failure to comply with these unusual regulations could result in fines of up to £1,000, leaving drivers with empty pockets and a host of legal troubles.


One law stipulates that parking a dirty van could land the driver with a £1,000 fine if the number plate is unreadable. It is essential to keep vehicles in a presentable state to avoid such penalties.

Additionally, parking in close proximity to a fire hydrant can lead to an on-the-spot fine of £500. Emergency services require clear and easy access to hydrants in case of incidents, and obstructing them can lead to severe consequences.


While parking on pavements is not illegal throughout the country, it is considered a criminal offence in London, unless explicit permission is granted. However, even outside of London, vans can still be reported if they cause an obstruction.


Using wheelie bins, traffic cones, or any other objects to reserve parking spaces near homes or workspaces can be seen as causing a dangerous obstruction on the road. This practice can result in fixed penalties being issued.


In most cases, parking heavy vans on grass verges is allowed, unless the van exceeds the weight limit of 7.5 tonnes. It is essential for drivers to check the specific rules in their local area before parking on grass verges.

Drivers must also remember to remove any ornaments or air fresheners that obstruct their view of the road. Under the Road Traffic Act 1988, van drivers can be found guilty of careless driving if an accident occurs due to obstructed vision.

Lastly, breaking time limits on double yellow lines can result in penalty fines and points on the driver's licence. Vans engaged in light loading are generally allowed 20 minutes on double yellows, while heavy loading extends the limit to 40 minutes. Exceeding these time restrictions can lead to legal consequences.


Drivers are strongly encouraged to familiarise themselves with these lesser-known laws to avoid unnecessary fines and penalties. Ignorance of these regulations is not a valid excuse, and drivers should take responsibility for adhering to them to ensure a trouble-free parking experience.


Tim Alcock, from LeaseVan, said: “Drivers need to brush up on their motoring laws to prevent any nasty surprises if a fine comes through the post.

“Even common mistakes such as parking too close to a fire hydrant and having a dirty van can result in hefty fines, which is why it’s important to be vigilant when it comes to your vehicle.

“Some of these laws can result in fines of up to £1,000, points on your license and eventually a driving ban if continuously broken.”

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