HAVE you ever seen parking this bad?

These photos, provided by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, are examples of people parking in front of fire stations or causing delays by bad parking on narrow roads.

This comes as a campaign was launched to solve parking in front of fire stations across the Southampton area.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service launched the campaign called #INeedMySpace a few years ago following hundreds of people parking in front of fire station doors, or parking badly on roads causing delays to fire engines.

An increasing number of incidents involving cars and fire engines were happening across the county.

Examples also include verbal abuse aimed at firecrews when they ask the car to move.

Fire stations in the area which are known for bad parking are Romsey, St Mary’s, Fordingbridge and Portchester.

New Forest Post:

Pete White from Fordingbridge Station, said: “It is a daily occurrence, people pull in and use that space to have a telephone conversation or to pick people up. We need that entire space to get the fire engine out. If anything is there it impedes our exit.

“They seem to be so dismissive as well when you ask them to move, it’s like ‘well I’m only here for a couple of minutes’ but that’s all it takes.

“In the past people have been really rude. A member of the crew tried to get someone to move and got a load of verbal abuse. The final straw is when you get sworn at.

“We shouldn’t have to be spoken to like that.”

He added: “We’re on an on-call fire station, it’s an issue for us getting out but also for people coming in.

“It’s problematic in Fordingbridge but also right across Hampshire.

“Romsey have the same problem, Portchester, Rushmoor.

“If it was on the other foot and the 999 call was for them, they’d be shouting about it. We can’t put a barrier up or gates.

“It’s not an additional car park.

“People need to think about what might happen. Let’s hope we never have to put on the front page that firefighters were delayed because of somebody parking at the front of the station.”

New Forest Post:

Community Safety Group Manager, Glenn Bowyer, said: “ For the fire service seconds can cost lives, it’s that simple. Some drivers are parking opposite each other making a road inaccessible.

“Others are actually blocking our stations with their vehicles.

“By parking considerately you are helping us save lives.

“Imagine if it was your loved ones we were coming to help.”

Karen Hilton, Chief Commercial Officer at heycar said: “heycar is behind Hampshire Fire and Rescue’s #INeedMySpace campaign.

“If parking priority should be given to anyone it is most certainly the emergency services.

“We’d urge anyone who is parking up anywhere just to have a quick look around to make sure they have left enough space for a fire engine or other emergency vehicles to pass.”

New Forest Post:

Brake, who are a road safety charity, have also supported the campaign from Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

A Brake spokesperson said: "Our emergency services play a vital role in keeping us all safe and need to be able to get to potentially life threatening situations without delay.

"The #INeedMySpace campaign is delivering an important message, and one that should be reiterated this Road Safety Week, as we encourage drivers to Step Up for Safe Streets.

"We would urge all drivers to ensure that they don’t block fire station exits, including not stopping in the hatched areas, and avoid making roads inaccessible when parking.

"Drivers should also follow the advice provided by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service on how best to help emergency vehicles get to incidents.”

New Forest Post:

Other charities that are also supporting the campaign are Blue Light Aware and Road Safety UK.

When moving out of the way of an emergency vehicle, they suggest taking three steps; Calm, Alert and Response.

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