Bedford Police Department to Participate in Placard Abuse Prevention Week

BEDFORD -- Chief Robert Bongiorno announces that the Bedford Police Department will be participating in Placard Abuse Prevention Week to help reduce the misuse of placards statewide.

Placard Abuse Prevention Week, which runs from May 6-13, is led by a task force through the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV). The initiative aims to reduce disabled parking placard abuse so that parking spaces are always available for those who need them.

The Bedford Police Department will be on the lookout in parking lots and shopping plazas for expired and/or misused placards. Violators will be issued a citation or ticket, and officers will send the placard's information to the RMV for confiscation. Placard owners/holders can face penalties even if they’re not present at the time of misuse.

The most common forms of handicap parking abuse include:

• Using a placard that belonged to a deceased relative

• Using a spouse’s placard without the spouse present

• Using an expired placard

• Using placards with altered expiration dates

“Using a disability placard that does not belong to you or is expired is not only illegal, but by abusing this system, you’re taking away a valuable resource for someone in need,” Chief Bongiorno said. “We will be devoting additional resources during Placard Abuse Prevention Week to monitor for misuse, and those who are found to be in violation will be cited or ticketed.” 

Additionally, in January, the RMV revamped its placard application to deter abuse and raise awareness of abuse with the medical community. The RMV is now automatically cancelling placards upon death notification and requesting placards of deceased individuals be returned by their estate.

If you know of or witness someone abusing a handicap placard or plate, call the Bedford Police Department at 781-275-1212 or visit the RMV online to fill out a form.