If you’ve arrived home to find that someone is parked across your driveway, or if you go to leave the house in the morning only to find that someone has blocked you in, you might be left Googling ‘what to do if someone is blocking your driveway uk’.
Whilst the best course of action is usually to try and speak to the driver of the vehicle and ask them to move it, this isn’t always possible (or safe). So, what should you do if you find your driveway being blocked by a parked vehicle and there’s no one around to move it?
Read on to find out.
What Does The Law Say About Blocking Driveways?
Unfortunately, the law does not protect homeowners against drivers blocking their driveway. In fact, the police will only usually get involved if the car that is parked is causing an obstruction to the road. This is because driveways are private land, so are not within the jurisdiction of the police.
Let’s refer to the Highway Code. Rule 243 states that drivers should not stop in front of an entrance to a property. However, this is only legally enforceable if the parked car is causing an obstruction to other traffic on the road, rather than access to a private property.
If, on the other hand, the vehicle in question is parked dangerously or may affect the ability for emergency vehicles to access the road, this is illegal and can be reported to the police.
Blocked Driveway – What You Should Do
The first thing you should do is try and speak to the owner of the vehicle. If they are parked on your driveway and you can’t get past, it’s likely that they live nearby. Politely knock on their door and explain the situation – chances are, they weren’t aware that they were causing an issue and will be happy to move their car.
If the owner of the vehicle is not around, or if they are unwilling to move, your next step is to call the police. However, it’s important to note that in most cases, the police will not be able to help. This is because, as we’ve mentioned, driveways are classed as private property.
The only time the police will usually get involved is if the vehicle is causing an obstruction to the road. If this is the case, you can call 101 and report the incident. The police may then choose to move the vehicle themselves or issue a traffic offence notice to the driver.
If the police are unable to help, your only other option is to wait until the driver of the vehicle returns and politely ask them to move.
If you find out who the driver is, you could choose to contact a solicitor to pursue a claim for nuisance. To do this, you would need to know the identity of the driver of the parked vehicle, as well as having the funds to employ a solicitor. However, this doesn’t help you in the short term if you need to access your property.
Preventing Cars From Blocking Your Driveway
Of course, the best way to deal with someone blocking your driveway is to prevent it from happening in the first place. One way to do this is to install a gates or post at the entrance to your property. This will make it clear to drivers that they are not allowed to park on your land, and will deter them from doing so.
You could also consider installing CCTV cameras at your property. This will not only act as a deterrent to drivers, but will also give you evidence if someone does block your driveway.
If you do not already have a dropped kerb at your property, you could also consider installing one. This will make it clear to drivers that they are not allowed to park on your land, and will make it easier for you to get in and out of your driveway. To do this, you’ll need to contact your local authority for permission.
It’s worth noting that it is illegal to block the road with objects such as traffic cones or wheelie bins in order to stop cars from parking outside your house, so this is not something that you should do.
Can I Park In Front Of A Driveway Without A Dropped Kerb?
If there is no dropped kerb at a property, it’s not automatically illegal to park in front of the driveway. However, you should always check for any signs that may indicate that you cannot park on the road. This could include parking restriction signs or yellow lines painted on the road.
If you’re unsure whether you can park on the road, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and find another place to park.
Can I Park In Front Of My Own Dropped Kerb?
The highway code states that you should not park across a dropped kerb. This is because a dropped kerb is designed to allow people such as wheelchair users to cross the road safely, as well as allowing access to properties for vehicles.
This means that you could receive a fine from your local authority if you park across a dropped kerb, even if this is outside your own home.
Can You Legally Stop Someone Parking Outside Your House?
There is no legal way to stop someone from parking outside your house. This is because it is legal for drivers to park anywhere that the law allows, providing the vehicle is taxed and insured. However, as we’ve mentioned, there are some things that you can do to deter drivers from parking on your land, such as installing gates or posts at the entrance to your property.
Finding a car blocking your driveway can be frustrating, and unfortunately it isn’t always illegal unless it is obstructing the highway. The best thing to do if you find yourself in this situation is to try and find the driver of the vehicle and ask them to move it. However, only do this if you feel that it is safe to approach the driver – after all, safety is the most important thing!
In this article, we have explained what to do if someone is blocking your driveway in the UK, as well as giving you some tips on how to prevent vehicles from blocking you in. Let us know your experiences.