Don't be surprised if you park in a disabled parking spot and are approached by a police officer to confirm your disability status.
The California Department of Motor Vehicles has recently started an operation to enforce the proper use of disabled placards and licenses.
“I need to verify this placard belongs to you,” said one state police officer to a person who just parked in a disabled parking stall at Fenton Parkway Plaza in Mission Valley.
Able bodied people who park disabled parking spaces using someone else's placard or driving someone's vehicle with a disabled plate must have the disabled person with them or close by, according to the DMV.
Those caught misusing disabled license plates and placards will be cited with a misdemeanor and fined of up to 1250 dollars.
If an able bodied person parks in a disabled parking stall without using a placard or without having a disabled plate, that's an infraction with a minimum fine of 250 dollars.
Plus it inconveniences those who are actually disabled.
Trish Fleming who is disabled said, “It seems like there are so many people misusing the placard, and I don't know how successful they are with this program, but I think it’s good to stay on top of it.”
Jazzmine Ashley, who is able bodied, approves of the operation.
“I think it’s great," she said. "They’re enforcing it, especially since people who are able to walk should walk.”
The DMV said 275 people were contacted Tuesday during one of its operations. Four people were cited.