4WDs driven from the zone - The changing face of Sydney's streets

The Daily Telegraph

Tuesday 27 April 200



ONE of the last great parking rorts is about to come to an end.

For years it's been one of the state's worst-kept secrets that drivers of 4WDs, hatchbacks and people-movers could enjoy free parking in loading zones.

Due to council parking rangers' confusion and a poorly-defined state law, drivers of the vehicles have escaped parking fines.

This has proved particularly handy in busy commercial centres, where it's often impossible to find legitimate parking spots.

But a Pedestrian Council of Australia campaign has ended the loading zone parking scam.

A letter from NSW Roads parliamentary secretary Tony Stewart to Willoughby Council's senior ranger Richard Goulston on March 19 confirmed these vehicles will soon face a $90 fine.

In the letter, Mr Stewart referred to confusion about the current rule which lets drivers of “station wagons” park in loading zones for up to 15 minutes if they are collecting or unloading goods.

Many council rangers believe that a definition of “station wagons” extends to 4WDs, hatchbacks or family people-movers.

Because it's hard to see if a driver is loading or unloading goods, drivers of these vehicles have usually escaped fines.

The Roads and Traffic Authority's metropolitan loading zone working party will begin an education campaign on the issue.

“Generally, 4WD, hatchback and people-mover-type vehicles that do not have sedan equivalents do not qualify and as such will be liable to an infringement notice,” his letter reads.

Mr Stewart said yesterday that 4WD drivers were taking space set aside for delivery vehicles.

“Some unscrupulous car dealers even tell people that if they buy 4WD cars, they will be able to park in loading zones,” he said.

“It's a problem in Mosman and Willoughby, where a mum with her four kids in a 4WD with imported mud parks in a loading zone, denying businesses the ability to unload goods.”

Willoughby ranger Richard Goulston said a “myth” that 4WDs could park in loading zones led to Chatswood's double-parking woes.

In Chatswood yesterday, seven 4WDs were parked in loading zone spots over an hour.

Editorial, The Debate: Page 18


Campaign to ease the load


The rules now: Confusion exists over the definition of station wagons, which can park in loading zones. 4WD, hatchback and people-movers are generally allowed to park in loading zones for up to 15 minutes if the driver is loading/unloading goods

The changes:
An RTA campaign is likely to confirm that 4WDs, hatchbacks and people movers cannot park in loading zones under any circumstances. Trucks, vans or station wagons with “sedan equivalents”, and in use for loading, can use loading zones.

A 4WD which doesn't have a “sedan” model would be fined $90, a Fairlane station wagon which has a sedan model would not

The Debate

The Daily Telegraph

Tuesday 27 April 2004

By Harold Scruby, Warren Brown

Should 4WDs, hatchbacks and people movers be banned from parking in loading zones?

THE Pedestrian Council of Australia totally agrees with the stance of the State Government on this matter.

Drivers of 4WD, hatchback and people mover cars parking in loading zones create serious problems with double-parking in some of our busiest commercial areas.

By taking up scarce loading zone spots, they unlawfully force genuine delivery drivers to double-park.

This means it compromises the safety of both pedestrians and motorists.

Other motorists are forced to overtake double-parked vehicles, which create a blind spot. Meanwhile, pedestrians who step out in front of these double-parked vehicles are frequently hit in the process.

About 30 per cent of the loading zone spots in Clarence St, City, are filled with these vehicles. Councils have got to start doing proper audits of the needs of delivery vehicles versus those of the shoppers.

If we really wanted to get better traffic flow we should start considering whether most shops should be requested to not open before 10am.

This would allow delivery drivers to do their business unhindered in the early morning period.

* Harold Scruby is chairman of Pedestrian Council of Australia


IT was only a matter of time before 4WD owners such as myself would outstrip al-Qaeda as public enemy No.1.

Sydney's crack law enforcement agency, the elite Metropolitan Loading Zone Working Party has uncovered the latest skulduggery of undesirables who wish to undermine the Western World.

Parking cops, bless 'em, are confused about what constitutes a station wagon.

It seems 4WDs are being passed off as the humble station wagon in an attempt to destabilise the nation through abuse of loading zones. Right. So what sort of car can park in a loading zone? I know, let's ask the Premier! No, he doesn't even know what a car is.

Fortunately, the ever vigilant MLZWP has the answer. Only vehicles that have a sedan equivalent can park there.

Only vehicles that have siblings you can't load things into can load in a loading zone.

My Land Rover which can carry an upright piano can't park in a loading zone but the Datsun 120Y station wagon which would have trouble holding a pair of shoes can.

Well done MLZWP.

* Warren Brown is the Daily Telegraph's cartoonist and proud owner of a very big 4WD

Notice on all Parking Meters in Sydney CBD