You see them all the time at our parking areas across the island. No, we do not mean drivers who cannot park. Rather, we are referring to parking lots for the disabled. Here are some rules governing these special parking spaces that drivers should know.
In 1980, the Car Park Label Scheme (CPLS) was introduced to assist drivers with physical disabilities to board and alight from their vehicles. The CPLS was further expanded in 1996 to include drivers who may also be caregivers as they drive passengers with physical disabilities.
With the CPLS labels displayed prominently on the windscreen, drivers are then authorised to park in dedicated lots demarcated with the symbol of a person in a wheelchair. It goes without saying that parking in such lots for normal drivers without the label is a no-no.
Errant drivers who park in lots reserved for the disabled are liable to a fine of $200, an increased amount from the initial $50 since 2016, signalling the willingness of the authorities on taking a tough stance on enforcing accessible parking.
The Matter of Labels
As of now, only vehicles possessing CPLS labels are allowed to park in designated lots for the disabled.
Only disabled drivers or passengers who are medically certified by a Singapore-registered doctor as requiring mobility aids or the need to access wider spaces for safe vehicular boarding or alighting can apply for the parking labels under the CPLS.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) had also updated the rulings that surround parking lots for the disabled. From November 2017, only people with disabilities and who use wheelchairs, walking frames or lower-limb prostheses can park at the lots.
The marked difference is the exclusion of those using quadsticks and crutches who were previously part of the approved group. However, in the face of a public outcry, the MSF has since clarified that it would exercise flexiblity in deciding the eligibility to park at the accessible lots, regardless of the type of mobility aids being used.
The CPLS Labels
There are currently two different classes of labels under the CPLS.
Class 1 Label
This label is for disabled drivers requiring bulky mobility aids or a wider space to embark or disembark safely. The driver is able to park in the accessible lot for any duration.
Class 2 Label
Eligible Class 2 label holders are passengers who require mobility aids or a wider space to board or alight from a vehicle. The driver of the vehicle is permitted to park temporarily in the accessible lot for up to an hour to assist the disabled passenger.
Helpful Links and Reminders
If you are looking to apply for any of the labels, here is a helpful link from SG Enable, the agency in charge of administering the CPLS.
Drivers are reminded to display the labels on the left of their windscreens.
Class 1 labels are valid for up to five years while the Class 2 labels have a validity of up to two years.
If you would like to report the misuse of the accessible parking lot, depending on which carpark you are at, you can call 1800-338 6622 for HDB and URA carparks or use the OneService MobileApp for NParks Carparks.