Handicapped photo placards required by new year - FOX Carolina 21

Handicapped photo placards required by new year

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A handicap parking permit hang's from an Upstate driver's rearview mirror. (Nov. 29, 2012/FOX Carolina) A handicap parking permit hang's from an Upstate driver's rearview mirror. (Nov. 29, 2012/FOX Carolina)

Sometimes it takes Gerry Poster a little longer to get to where he's going than others.

"I'm recovering from Guillain-Barre. I was paralyzed for quite sometime and I obviously have a bummed leg," Poster said, as he pointed to his leg.

So, he has a handicapped parking placard that hangs on his car mirror with his picture on it and uses it when he needs to get a close as possible to entrances. He found a space and parked his car in a Greenville parking lot Thursday afternoon.

"The handicapped people themselves need to have access to have parking spaces," Poster said.

But not everyone yields or stops when they see a blue and white handicapped sign. Some drivers pull right in, or other drivers borrow placards to use as their own.

"I'm only hoping that the police are actually going to start paying attention," Poster said.

Administrators with the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles said illegal handicapped parking became such an issue that, back in 2010, it became law for handicapped drivers to get their pictures on their placards.

However, now the deadline for all handicapped drivers to have a photo-placard is quickly approaching.

Handicapped drivers must have a picture on their placards by Jan. 1, 2013 or before their card expires, whichever comes first. The law states those drivers must also have a handicapped registration certificate along with the card.

And although Poster said some drivers may not look like they're following the parking placard rule, he also said other drivers shouldn't be so quick to judge.

"Occasionally people have seen me and said 'Hey you don't look very handicapped,' which I reply, 'Thank you very much,'" Poster said.

Because on his good days, he's proud to take those extra steps.

"If the worst thing that happens to me in my life is that I have to limp 75 feet, then I should have lived a very charmed life."

Those who qualify for the handicapped placards can get photo-placards at the DMV for a $1. If police catch drivers parked illegally in a handicapped space, they could face fines up to $250 dollar or 30 days in jail.

Copyright 2012 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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