Last Updated on September 8, 2023 by Lawrence Berezin
Park in NYC after learning the fundamental rules of the curb
Is the art of finding a safe space to park in NYC an acquired trait? Or Is your DNA wired to speed read, process confusing data, and make sound decisions 100% of the time?
Meanwhile, I wasn’t born with a “park in NYC gene.” So, here are some key points to remember before attempting to park safely in NYC.
- All of NYC is a tow-away zone.
That is to say, no notice is required. Likewise, you can thank Albany for this dangerous state of affairs.
To clarify, in the 1950s, the NY State legislature voted in favor of allowing Captain Hook to grab your chariot for any safety or parking rules violation. Therefore, the discretion to ruin your day and empty your wallet was given to warriors and cops. Yikes.
However, the only way to fix this sorry state of affairs is to learn the rules and obey them as best you can.
2. You are prohibited from stopping, standing, and parking within 15 feet of a fire hydrant
That depends on the status of you and your ride—for example, if you are driving a passenger vehicle and remain seated behind the wheel, you can stand Fifteen feet in all directions from the pump. (But don’t expect to find a yellow-painted curb to designate the distance. Yellow paint on a curb has no significance whatsoever in parking in NYC.
Meanwhile, here is the exception to the “no park” fire hydrant zone in more detail:
- Between sunrise and sunset
- A passenger vehicle (but not a commercial vehicle)
- Can stop, stand, or park within 15 feet of a fire hydrant
- As long as a licensed driver remains seated behind the wheel (not in the passenger seat or rear seat)
- With the keys
- Ready to move upon request to do so by a person of authority
More to Read
3. Leaving a note on your car doesn’t mean a thing if you’re standing or parking illegally
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the excuse, “I only ran into the store for a second and left a note on the windshield for the warrior.”
Maybe a note from “Epstein’s Mother” may hold some weight. But an epistle from you, in essence, telling the warrior that you empowered yourself to waive the parking rules while you run into the store for just a minute, isn’t going to hold much weight in Parking Ticket Land.
Believe me, no self-respecting warrior will grant you amnesty.
Larry’s Driveway Guide
Here is one of Larry’s all-time favorite cheat sheets. You’ll learn:
- The NYC Traffic Rule, 4-08(f)(2)
- The definition of a “driveway”
- The NY State Law stating how to remove a driveway blocker
- Five Driveway Mistakes That Spell Disaster
- A fascinating list of the ten most blocked driveways in NYC
- And much more…
4. The length of a bus stop varies from block to block
Here are some of the comments I’ve heard from wonderful members of the driving public:
- “I parked at least 8 feet from the bus stop shelter” [But, the average bus is 42-45 feet long]
- “I parked all the way down the block from the bus stop sign and still got a bus stop ticket”[But, parking way down the block is not a defense to a bus stop violation]
- ” I picked up my friend, and we only waited at the bus stop for a minute to decide where to go next” [ But, you’ve got to exit a bus stop zone immediately or sooner]
- “My friend was getting into my car with her two bags, and we still got a bus stop ticket” [But, a bus stop zone is a no-standing zone. You can only pick up or discharge people, not their property, in a bus stop zone]
Learning is relentless repetition, so here it goes:
- A bus stop zone starts at the bus stop sign
- Extends in the direction of the arrow(s)
- Until the next parking sign
- Or if none, the end of the block
Keep reading and
You are permitted to stand in a bus stop zone:
- Stop temporarily
- Expeditiously pick up or discharge
- Not property
- Leave immediately
- Not interfere with a bus entering or exiting the bus stop zone
5. You can legally park in front of a pedestrian ramp (curb cut) if:
- It is not at a 4-corner intersection
- it lives mid-block
- On the long ‘T’
- Of a ‘T’ intersection
- No marked crosswalk
- Traffic control device
- Stop signs
- Regulating traffic
6. A driveway is a no-standing zone
You are permitted to stop temporarily to drop off or pick up a passenger in a no-standing zone. But:
- You can’t stay longer than a “New York Minute”
- You cannot drop off or pick up a passenger and her stuff
[If you like the image below, pin it…Thanks, Larry]
I’m totally convinced we can beat the Evil Empire at its own game. But, it takes commitment to learning the rules and transferring your knowledge to the real-life drama of parking in NYC.
I’m wit chu!