THURROCK Council is cracking down on inconsiderate and thoughtless parents parking outside schools.
In an effort to get the road safety message across, the council is doubling the number of Civil Enforcement Officers (CEOs) visiting schools daily during term time.
There has been a rota system in place ensuring all 57 Thurrock schools are visited at least once a month by two officers.
In the build-up to the Easter break the council started sending out four officers every morning and afternoon and this will continue.
At the larger and busier schools, all four CEOs will work together, warning parents or issuing penalty charge notices where necessary, however at smaller schools only two will work while their colleagues move on to another school hotspot.
Among the many infractions CEOs find outside schools are vehicles parked in a restricted street where waiting/loading restrictions are in force; parked next to a drop-kerb; or stopped in a restricted area outside a school.
But enforcement is the final tool the council uses to make roads outside schools safer.
Its road safety team is working with schools and parents, establishing park-and-stride schemes where a safe site is identified a short walk from the school. This will create a safe, congestion-free zone outside the school with the added benefit of pupils getting exercise.
Denise Langan, the council’s road safety manager, said: “School keep-clear markings are there to provide a clear area in which children can cross the road more safely.
“Children, because if their size, cannot easily see if the road is clear with parked cars on the road and drivers cannot see small children hidden by parked cars.
“Parking on the markings puts children at risk and parents should find alternative places to stop if they have to use the car on the school journey.”