Frustrated motorists today dubbed new barriers at a Fylde coast car park as ‘ridiculous’ and ‘unsafe’.
Wyre Council, last month, replaced existing barriers at the Teanlowe Centre car park in Poulton which were in disrepair.
It is hoped the 2m high barriers will stop unauthorised vehicles from using the car park and prevent illegal settlement by travellers and flytipping.
But Steven Wright, of Holts lane, Poulton, who takes his disabled wife Diane into the shopping centre, said the barrier is too low for his car to pass under.
Mr Wright, 59, said: “I have a Renault Master Van at 2.38m high, as my wife uses a wheelchair and it won’t go under the barrier.
“We used to go to the Teanlowe centre four or five times a week but there is no point now as we cannot park nearby, especially when the weather is bad.
“This will seriously affect my wife because going into Poulton is her lifeline, it gets her out of the house, she will be housebound if we cannot go there.
“And why should we be forced to spend petrol money to travel further from home because the council cannot fit suitable barriers? It’s not just us, there are plenty of disabled people living here, there are a number of people who are facing problems.”
George McCaffer, manager of the Market Hall in Poulton, said he was first aware of the change when an ambulance could not access the site.
He said: “I came in a couple of weeks ago and had bust a rib, I was in agony so someone gave me a painkiller which I had an allergic reaction to.
“My face went beetroot and an ambulance was called, it seemed to take ages to arrive and I was told the vehicle was having difficult accessing the car park.
“I think the barrier should be open between 9am-5pm for our customers and closed at other times.”
Wyre Council bosses say they have not been made aware of any drivers unable to access the site but will review the location and height of the barrier if required.
A spokesman said: “Wyre Council spoke to the ambulance service when the barriers were installed and provided the combination code for the locks.
“In addition there are a number of alternate access points to the Teanlowe Centre which provide more convenient access.
“The height of the barriers is over two metres which is sufficient for most vehicles however if a member of the public is prevented from gaining legitimate access to the car park, the council will be happy to open the barriers for them.
“There are also other car parks very close by that do not currently have height restrictions, including Ball Street Car Park, and street parking.”
The ambulance service confirmed it was in discussion with the council about accessing the car park, but said it had no record of the incident Mr McCaffer mentioned.
Any motorists who require assistance should contact: (01253) 891000.