Byron bans vanpackers camping

SLEEPING in your car on roadsides overnight will now be banned within certain areas of Byron Shire.

The policy approved at yesterday's council meeting gives Byron Shire more power to crack down on people sleeping in vans and cars.

The council has received complaints that vanpackers leave rubbish on roadsides, behave in an anti-social manner and create noise in residential areas.

But, until now, rangers have only been able to fine campers who have not complied with street signs that prohibit parking between 1am-5am or 1am-6am.

'No Camping' signs will now be placed at locations such as Belongil Beach, Suffolk Park, Brunswick Heads, South Golden Beach and a number of roads off Butler St at Byron Bay.

Council has said its prohibition on roadside camping will not affect people who may sleep in their vehicles because of homelessness.

In six days over the Christmas-New Year period, shire rangers issued more than 550 penalty notices for street camping.

The fines are $88.