Disabled Parking

“The disabled” refers to people who are unable to walk or have some physical or mental disabilities. They were previously called the handicapped. I was at a local shopping mall when I came across this signage at a parking space.

disabled

The Problem

The word “disabled” is wrongly used. “Disabled” means two things:

  • disabled (n. / adj.) = a person who has difficulty moving around
    (e.g.: Facilities for the disabled are available at the airport.
    The disabled child was assisted by a nanny.)
  • disabled (v.) = to stop something from being used / accessed
    (e.g.: The alarm was disabled, so the thief stole everything.
    After 30 days, some of the software features will be disabled.
    )

Therefore, based on the above explanations and examples, “Disabled Parking” is wrong because a parking spot is not human, and it’s not possible to disable the place used for parking a car.

The signage wants to tell shoppers that the parking space is for the disabled (people). Therefore, the signage should be correctly labelled as “Parking for the Disabled“.

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Posted on August 29, 2009, in Jottings and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. There are tonnes of all this English mistake over in Malaysia.. not just wrongly used English, but also having wrong spelling..

    • English is merely a second language in Malaysia, and many do not want to learn English, if given a choice. This sort of explains the problems in not only spellings but also problems in the use of words, and in composing correct phrases and sentences.

  2. At one glanced i know what they meant.
    After your explanation, then the signage is wrong.
    tks for sharing, take care šŸ™‚

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