Blue disc zones in car parks

Don’t know if the rest of you are getting these in your part of Switzerland, but here around Fribourg city it seems some shopping centres are requiring you to put your blue disc out when you use their car parks.

Now I have no problem with this - except they haven’t really signposted this fact very well so you could easily be caught out because it’s not obvious in any way. At one of the centres we go to regularly the only notification that you need to put your blue disc out are small signs in the shops’ windows; there’s no other signage whatsoever as you enter the car park to tell you this.

The other one we go to didn’t initially have signage up until again you actually reached the entrance to the building, though they have since made the signage more clear as you go into the car park.

And don’t say it doesn’t matter because they never check the car parks. Husband went to the second place I mentioned today and saw a policewoman booking someone for not having their disc on display.

Isn’t a private car park private property? The person writing ‘tickets’ isn’t likely to be employed by the police, the commune or the Canton.

Wouldn’t any ‘ticket’ be a civil matter?

Both our Coop and Migros have blue disc requirement in their car-parks. Perhaps imposed by the Commune to ensure they are not clogged with day/long-term parkers?

I don’t think the communes could do that and enforce it as communal property.

Most shopping centres around Geneva (and across the border in neighbouring France) have required them for decades. OH has developed the habit of putting it up in the windscreen wherever he parks, just in case.

I had nice experience in Zug, No blue disk, so put a note in my screen with the arrival time. Come out with shopping slightly apprehensive and the car park attendant had put a new blue disk under my wiper for me!

This is really annoying if the sign is nowhere clearly visible. Apart from that I'm really curious how does this practice align with the law (which letter?). In my home country, here and there, a normal road signs were used on private properties (like mall parks) to facilitate traffic over the property, but the police had no jurisdiction there. Having road signs on private property was not a crime but also wasn't an enforcement of a law, just a well understood guidance.

Parking illegally in public (street signs violation) results in a fine (i.e a criminal offence).

In private , it is a civil matter, so if you find an abandoned car in your private parking, you can contact the authorities to find the owner and go to court for compensation, but the police will not issue a parking fine .

As this can be cumbersome (you may simply want cars not to park), there is a possibility of asking a judge to make your private property treated as a public road .

If you look closely, you will always find a square street sign with a lot of text, saying "the judge of district x forbids parking ... except those who have rights. Fines according to the law ".

This allows normal no-parking street signs to be used, and the police can issue usual fines as usual (but only after complaint from the owners).

So this is how it aligns with the law: they are treated like normal offences and normal signs can be used but only after a judge orders so, upon request by the owners.

PS: In many cases it seems they are only after the most serious abusers, my local rest area has a bridge over the motorway which allows cars to change direction so it is popular for people to park, meet and carshare to somewhere else. It is limited by disk. A guy with a clipboard simply goes around at 10am and writes down all the car numbers, then does the same at 3pm and if you are still there (and the disk is not correct) puts a fine on your window.

There are none round here in any of our supermarkets.

The only places with parking restrictions are the two large shopping centres which have a pay per hour charge and barriers. The parking fee is pretty low but I think it’s largely to discourage people from parking there for the day and going to work in town etc

no idea, as both are in the village centre- perhaps part of a general policy about parking? Will ask the two Councillors I have regualr meetings with when I next see them. Curious.

Very wise! Thank you. Easy to learn to keep out of potential trouble in one of these areas of life that, over and over, seems to have a lot of grey zones.

Actually I forgot to mention that the car park at our commune admin centre was recently made a blue disc zone as well though it is signposted as you enter the parking area.

Yes, this is what’s annoying about it. No problem doing it, just make sure that it’s clearly signposted before you enter the parking areas. I’m sure a pretty good argument could be made in the courts re the one that only has the shops putting small signs out about it. a) it should be clear before you go into that area and b) not all the shops are putting the signs up either so how are motorists supposed to know?

I thought that you only need the blue disk if the parking places are marked in blue.

Never seen such a sign which makes a private place a public road. En contraire, those signs make it usually clear it is a private place and thus the police will and cannot enforce parking. It is up to the owner to take appropriate measures. However, the owner can bring matter to court relative easily and the court can fine a parking offender. But not based on the road traffic law, but on a special clause in the Civil Procedure Code: Art. 258 CPC
Note that there are some federal court ruling regarding this. Many concern how high a fee a property owner could charge instead of pressing charges at court. Federal court ruled up to CHF 52 is allowed as a private parking “fine” (legally it must be declared an inconvenience fee). BGER 6S.77/2003

Another of particular interest is if such a ban is actually possible and enforceable. Specially if the parking is open to a wider, general public. If it is, the place is considered as public road and therefore not road traffic law, not civil law should apply. BGER 6B_384/2020

Well yes, like those at our Coop and Migros. I do think it is possible that they asked for the zones to be included in blue disc zones- so that the spaces would only be used for short periods, and not for the whole day or more, by commuters using the railway station, etc.

Nope. It's a civil offence and cannot result in a criminal record. Same as moderate speeding. Excessive speeding will result in a criminal record.

This is correct (unless as you've point out, there has been a court order issued. Then they can.)

The order is: civil matter = sort out among yourselves/your lawyers and/or a judge.

civil offence - dealt with by the police (possibly other empowered bodies), but you can only be fined and you won't get a criminal record.

criminal offence - dealt with by the police, will result in a fine, could result in imprisonment.

A traffic area that’s intended for public use is subject to traffic law and regulations. The respective commune is the competent authority that determines whether any given area is deemed public, ownership is not among the relevant criteria. In practical terms ‘public’ means ‘accessible by anybody’. Temporal access restricions may apply, as well as specific limitations by vehicle type and similar.

The competent commune determines the required signalisation, it’s also the controlling body with the authority to issue fines (including fines by tasked 3rd parties).

Areas that are intended for private use don’t fall under the above, typically they’re visually or physically separated, commonly by barrier or signpost and markings.

For the details see this federal parliamentary postulate (in d/f/i/r) and the federal council’s reply.

the coop center in heimberg also has these but the lines are blue so it's clear.

In your case maybe the commune changed the rules after construction and the supermarket doesn't want to redo the parking just because of that.

Even if no limitation is written the supermarkets might send you a fine if they find your car when they open up in the morning.

Supermarkets are private but subject to rules that ban free or unlimited parking in order to control traffic.