It appears that disabled drivers are finding it harder and harder to park in a space designated for them, as fake parking stickers begin to hit the open market, according to The Star.

The English language daily reported that members of the Damai Disabled Person Association had complained of able-bodied drivers with such stickers taking disabled parking spots in several locations across Kuala Lumpur and the Klang Valley, particularly in shopping malls and at commercial areas.

These fake stickers are said to be sold openly at several hardware shops at a price of between RM7 and RM20 each. By contrast, authentic stickers could only be obtained from the Road Transport Department (JPJ) after an assessment of the condition of the applicant, said Damai Disabled Person Association Malaysia president V Murugeswaran.

“We are sad that there is also lack of enforcement by the local authorities. It seems that the irresponsible drivers are not worried about being fined,” he said, adding that the authorities should also mete higher penalties to deter other drivers from parking in disabled spaces.

handicap-oku-abuse-parking-lot

“We hope the authorities can also consider introducing a system similar in Germany or other countries where a machine will be able to send photos of vehicles without proper stickers immediately to the police or the local authorities,” he said.

The Star surveyed the area and found a few hardware stores selling disabled stickers to the public, despite the fact that only the JPJ is authorised to issue them. A shopkeeper at one store in Bangsar said that it stocked a variety of parking stickers that anyone could just walk in and buy. “We sell them for about RM10 to RM20,” he said.

Sunway Shopping Malls CEO HC Chan, who also serves as an adviser of the Malaysian Shopping Mall Association, said that the use of disabled parking lots was based on a trust system. “If the sticker is seen, there is little that can be done. But if guards see a healthy person parking in the OKU space, they will take action,” he said.