On Giants Game Days, Disabled Parking Abuse Persists

The cost of free parking is nothing more than pretending to be disabled.

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    A truck is parked in a disabled parking spot on July 20, 2011 in San Francisco, California.

    It's game day at AT&T Park. People come ready: wearing black and orange jerseys -- and hanging blue disabled parking permits from their rear view mirrors, good for free parking all day long at a metered spot, day or night, win or lose. Disabled -- or, in many cases, able-bodied.

    And police see the whole thing, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. "It's pretty obvious," said Capt. Al Casciato, who heads up the San Francisco Police Department's traffic division.

    Police have a difficult time cracking down on abuse of the disabled parking permits, the newspaper reported. There are 2,000 permits seized every year for abuse by able-bodied individuals, who use the blue cards to park for free, anywhere, anytime, the newspaper reported. But there are many more who get away scot-free.

    Enforcement relies on tips from neighbors, who repeatedly see abuse and then phone in tips to investigators, who bust parkers returning to or leaving their vehicles, the newspaper reported.

    "Thousands" of disabled people park their cars on streets around AT&T Park on game days, the newspaper reported.

    It's unknown how many people flaunt the law, but it's "routine" and "widespread," the newspaper reported.