LCQ2: Combatting illegal parking
It has been reported that the problem of illegal parking in various districts has aggravated since June last year. Illegally parked vehicles not only cause traffic obstructions, but may also jeopardise the safety of road users. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:
(1) whether it has studied the reasons for the aggravation of the problem of illegal parking in various districts in recent months; whether the Police's work of combating illegal parking has been affected due to the need for deploying a lot of manpower to deal with public events in recent months;
(2) of the number of complaints about illegal parking received by the Police in each of the past 24 months, with a breakdown by (i) the type of follow-up actions taken and (ii) the interval between the receipt of the complaint and the taking of such action(s) (in terms of hours);
(3) of the number of fixed penalty notices issued in respect of illegally parked vehicles, as well as the manpower deployed to deal with illegal parking, by the Police in each of the past 24 months, with a breakdown by police region; and
(4) whether the Police will deploy additional manpower to combat illegal parking so as to avoid illegally parked vehicles causing traffic obstructions and jeopardising the safety of road users; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that?
Upon consultation with the Hong Kong Police Force (the Police), my reply to the various parts of the Hon Chung Kwok-pan's question is as follows:
(1) and (4) Road safety is one of the operational priorities of the Police. Changing the irresponsible behaviour of road users that causes traffic obstructions is also among the Police's traffic enforcement priorities. All along, the Police pay much attention to the problem of illegal parking and seek to change such undesirable behaviour through publicity and education, and combat illegal parking through patrols and law enforcement.
Since June 2019, Hong Kong has seen widespread vandalism committed by violent protestors across the territory. The Police have been discharging their duties with commitment and devotion with a view to restoring social order as soon as possible, and safeguarding the lives and property of the public at large.
On enforcement against illegal parking, the Police issued a total of about 1.4 million fixed penalty notices against illegal parking in 2019. Given the Police's limited manpower, the traffic enforcement figures for the second half of 2019 indeed showed a decrease as compared to the corresponding period of 2018. Nevertheless, with less tension in the recent social atmosphere, all police districts in the territory have re-deployed their manpower to step up traffic enforcement operations and, as a result, the traffic enforcement figures for December 2019 started to rebound. Taking into account the overall manpower distribution of frontline enforcement staff and the deployment of resources in individual police districts, as well as the traffic conditions in different areas, the Police will deploy appropriate manpower according to the actual circumstances for enhancing enforcement action against illegal parking. Should members of the public observe any serious illegal parking on individual road sections which has caused traffic obstruction, they may report such cases to the Police for handling promptly.
(2) The numbers of complaints from members of the public about traffic congestion (including illegal parking) received by the Police each month in 2018 and 2019 are tabulated in Annex 1. As the Police have kept neither the breakdowns of follow-up actions taken on illegal parking nor the time taken for arriving at the scene for handling individual illegal parking cases, no such information can be provided.
(3) The numbers of fixed penalty notices issued by the Police in respect of illegal parking with a breakdown by police regions each month in 2018 and 2019 are tabulated in Annex 2. Since the Police have not kept the figures on the manpower deployed to deal with illegal parking, no such information can be provided. In general, all frontline police officers and traffic wardens can handle illegal parking cases as part of their regular duties.
Ends/Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Issued at HKT 13:00
Issued at HKT 13:00