Residents in the seafront district of Carvajal, in Fuengirola, have had enough of the motorhomes and mobile caravans "camped out" on their paseo marítimo. They are calling for the local authorities to do more about the supposed problem, claiming that some have been parked up there for months, when the official limit is 48 hours.
The president of the Carvajal residents' association, Eladia Pabón has said that, apart from breaking the law, the long-term parking causes harm in other ways. "They empty out waste water onto the paseo. There's one motorhome that's been in the same place for two years, so it can't empty its toilet tanks anywhere else," she explained adding, "I've managed to count up to 11 motorhomes on the stretch between the Fuengirola Playa apartments and the Los Marinos chiringuito."
They take up parking places, in that particular example for two years, but there are others here for one or two months, as long as their holidays last. And most of them have Spanish number plates."
Besides the parking problem, Pabón explains that users come out onto the pavement "to sit down as if it were a campsite". "The strangest thing of all is that the Local Police don't enforce the bylaws, and I understand that they don't warn [the occupants] about the illegality."
Despite these concerns, which are shared by many local business owners, Eladia Pabón is not against the caravans or motorhomes, if they are in the right place. "In Fuengirola we've got an excellent campsite as well as areas marked off for motorhomes to park in the feria ground. But parking up on the street, especially on holiday, cooking, washing, spending a while sitting on the pavement as if it was a terrace..."
The Ciudadanos party will propose changes to bylaws in the next Fuengirola council meeting to include a clear statement that the maximum amount of time allowed for parking is 24 hours, (and not 48 hours as now), except for locally registered vehicles or those parked in specially designated areas.