Tesco Blue Badge Parking. Tesco parking officials are using handheld gadgets to catch out disabled bay cheats, it has emerged amid supermarket clampdowns on fake blue badges.

The supermarket is believed to be the first high street giant to harness the new technology to catch out shoppers parking illegally. Tesco is said to have given parking patrol attendants handheld devices linked to the government’s DVLA driver database.

This will tell staff instantly if the cars in the disabled bays belong to a genuine Blue Badge holder and, if not, send a penalty charge notice direct to their home address.

It comes after growing complaints from customers including disabled ex-servicemen and women as well as able-bodied shoppers at abuse of the system.

Many of those who need the spaces are soldiers who suffered life changing injuries and are trying to adapt back into normal society.

The technology has been introduced by Tesco’s car park operations manager, Cat Parkinson, whose parents were teachers at a school for pupils with special needs, making it an issue close to her heart, she said.

She also spoke to disabled servicemen and women before launching the scheme this week. She said: “The subject of living with disability is close to my heart.

I got to know students and their loved ones and learnt about living with a disability. “The new self-monitoring scheme allows stores to better control their car park, to help protect the disabled bays. This makes parking at Tesco fairer for everyone.

“I spoke to British paratrooper Jordan Beecher who shops at our Finchley store. In 2012, while on his third operational tour of Afghanistan, he stepped on an improvised explosive device which claimed his left leg.

“Jordan told me it was imperative that he had access to disabled parking as he adjusted to his new circumstances.”

She added: “Disabled parking is an important part of the customer experience that is sometimes overlooked. I’m trying to change that.”

The scheme was initially trialled in 70 stores before being rolled out nationwide, she said.

Source: The Telegraph