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Friday, March 1, 2024

“Vehicle ran over and killed a person in a wheelchair because there were cars on the sidewalk”

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«Όχημα παρεσυ&rho ;ε και σκότωσε ;μα επειδor στο πεζοδρoμιο υπorρχα ν αυτοκiνητα»

Vehicles parked on the sidewalks have become a scourge, causing various problems both for pedestrians, but especially for disabled people, who are forced to get off the road, putting their lives at risk, in order to continue on their way. Added to the equation are rental bikes and electric scooters, which have caused quite a bit of discomfort for many residents, with organizations representing people with disabilities crying foul.

The problem in question, as the years go by, seems to have started to swell, since with a cursory glance at any street in the center of each city, it is obvious that many choose the easy solution, especially when they are in a hurry and park their vehicles on the sidewalks. At the same time, the fact that many sidewalks are so narrow that there is no room for a pedestrian to move around the vehicle causes more irritation, and in the case of people with mobility disabilities, it means that they cannot use the sidewalk at all.

Organizations representing people with disabilities have repeatedly sounded the alarm about the consequences of having to step off the sidewalk into the street just to get from one point to another.

“Some years ago a car hit a person in a wheelchair and he died. The man had gone down to the pavement because there were cars on the pavement. But to understand our culture and quality, those who went to this man's funeral parked on the sidewalks. This problem is deeply rooted in the Cypriot mentality and there is tolerance and impossible implementation of the legislation”, the president of OPAK, Dimitris Lambrianidis, indicated to the REPORTER, in an attempt to explain the magnitude of the problem that exists.

Problem with apartment buildings

The fact that in all cities the construction of new apartment buildings is constantly observed, it causes undesirable effects, as the available parking space decreases, while the spaces offered are not sufficient for the tenants.

“There is an aggravation of the problem because new apartment buildings are being built, which only have one parking space for each apartment. However, in each apartment there are two or three cars, as a result of which the parking lots and sidewalks around the apartment building are filled with cars at night. But even in the city center we see this happening often, even if some people do it for a few minutes. They may be speeding and parking illegally, but they are preventing their fellow citizens from using the sidewalks and having safe movement on the sidewalks.”

Proposed solutions to address of the problem

Mr. Lambrianidis, once again, did not hide his displeasure that until today there are no appropriate measures to prevent offenders from parking on the sidewalks, while he pointed out that the State must demonstrate the will, so that they are taken the decisions that will change the situation.

“We find that the problem is not the penalties, but the weakness in surveillance. Unfortunately, although we have been asking the state for years to allow photo-only mail to be sent out of court, the House has not responded to discuss this issue, which shows that they do not want stricter surveillance. We must also consider the possibility of the authorities cooperating with private companies and assigning them to photograph the offenders. The photos should be sent to a central service, so that the offenders can be sent the court orders, so that they stop parking on the sidewalks.”

He puts the problems before Vafeadis. KYSOA

Next Monday, KYSOA is expected to see the Minister of Transport, Alexis Vafeadis, to whom they will present all the problems they have recorded, regarding concerns their safe movement on the sidewalks. One of them is the issue of the growing number of cars parked illegally, while the issue of trees and other artificial obstacles, which were placed on the sidewalks for aesthetic reasons and serve no purpose, only create problems, is also expected to be brought to the table.

Source: reporter.com.cy

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