Clamping the wheels of illegally-parked cars will be banned in Western Australia under proposed legislation, with the state government labelling the practice predatory and a “disgraceful scam”.

The announcement on Monday follows a series of headline-grabbing wheel clamping blitzes at strip shopping precincts and popular locations including Scarborough Beach.

Many people say the enforcers lurk nearby, ready to pounce, while the signage about the parking restrictions isn’t always clear.

Under the state government’s plan, towing will be the last resort for illegally-parked cars on private property, an attempt must be made to contact the vehicle owner, costs will be capped and WA Police must be notified.

Premier Mark McGowan said clamping was “un-Australian” and “infuriating”.

“The people doing this are often thugs and bullies,” Mr McGowan said on Tuesday.

“This is annoying the hell out of people all over Perth and we’re going to make sure that it stops because it is wrong.


“It is unfairly targeting innocent people and it’s making money out of people who shouldn’t have to pay and can’t afford to pay.”

City of Stirling mayor Mark Irwin said clamping was keeping customers away from businesses.

“These people are sitting in their cars and waiting to make the most, to make a buck out of people,” Mr Irwin said.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the state government was modelling the draft bill on similar legislation in Queensland, Victoria and NSW.