Chief of Police
45 Center Street
Burlington, MA 01803
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Contact: John Guilfoil
Burlington Police Department Reports Continued Success of Handicap Parking Enforcement Program
BURLINGTON — Police Chief Michael R. Kent is pleased to report that the Burlington Police Department has successfully completed the second phase of Operation Access, the Department’s effort to enforce handicap parking regulations and ensure access for disabled and mobility impaired people.
During nine days of aggressive enforcement in March, the Burlington Police Department wrote 159 parking tickets for illegally parking in a handicap parking spot. The Department also issued 11 citations for the misuse of a handicap parking permit — for motorists who improperly used someone else’s permit to park in a handicap space.
The Department is now considering a more regular ramping up of enforcement, as the number of citations were virtually unchanged from the first enforcement period in December. During the first phase of Operation Access the Department wrote 154 parking violations and 15 misuse citations.
“Our goal is to educate the public about parking regulations and maintain a visible presence so that motorist will know that they risk a fine every time they illegally occupy a handicap parking spot,” said Burlington Police Sergeant Gerard McDonough, who oversees Operation Access. “You will pay back the seconds you save by illegally parking in a handicap space by spending a few minutes with a police officer, who will run your plates, write you a ticket, and be glad to discuss the importance of handicap access with you.”
During enforcement periods, Chief Kent assigned two officers per day to enforce Disabled Parking laws throughout Burlington, including at the town’s busiest shopping centers and the Burlington Mall.
“Disabled parking spaces exist solely to provide those with limited mobility a fair and equitable opportunity to shop, dine, and enjoy everything that our community has to offer,” Chief Kent said. “It is not meant to provide a close parking spot for someone who does not feel like walking a few extra yards..”
Chief Kent added that his goal for Operation Access is to educate the public so that this program is no longer needed to keep people from taking handicap parking spaces.