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17th of January 2018

Automotive



Government unveils proposals to allow remote-control car parking

Parking your car via remote control could soon be legal in the UK, after the Government announced it has launched a consultation looking into the issue.

Although currently reserved for high-end models like the BMW 5 Series, remote-control parking allows drivers to park their cars using its keyfob or a smartphone app, and can be particularly helpful for those with reduced mobility, and when getting into tight spaces.

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But UK laws surrounding remote-control parking systems are something of a grey area. According to the consultation document, “uncertainty” remains as to whether remote parking systems could lead “enforcement authorities or the Court” to interpret them as “being in contravention” of regulations.

The consultation proposes adding a new rule to the Highway Code, which would state: “You can park your vehicle via remote control, using a legally compliant parking application or device in an appropriate way which does not endanger others.”

Another proposed change, however, would warn drivers that: “If you are using advanced driver assistance systems, like motorway assist, or a remote control parking application or device, then you as the driver are still responsible for the vehicle and MUST exercise full control over these systems at all times”.

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Announcing the launch of the consultation, Transport Minister Jesse Norman said: “Features such as remote control parking and motorway assist have the potential to transform car travel, adding greater convenience and accessibility to drivers, so that they can park and drive with more confidence.”

The consultation was welcomed by Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, who said: “These proposals, providing clarity and confidence to consumers, are good news. We welcome government’s continued commitment to keep the UK at the forefront of connected and autonomous vehicle development and rollout.”

Do you think remote parking is a good idea? Let us know in the comments below.

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