Last Updated on August 14, 2021 by Lawrence Berezin
Parking signs defy common sense.
Why do NYC parking signs complicate things? First, the meaning of many signs is puzzling, especially when there are two or more on a gotcha pole.
Second, does a bus stop tell you how long it is? No siree. So, why doesn’t the Evil Empire make it clear that:
- A bus stop starts at the bus stop sign and extends in the arrow(s) direction until the next parking sign or, if none, the end of the block.
- The length of an NYC bus stop varies from block to block. No two bus stops are ever the same length.
- It matters not that you parked so far away from the bus stop sign that a bus can enter and depart a bus stop zone without crashing into your car.
- A bus stop zone is really the same as any no-standing zone. All no standing parking signs regulate the curb space from the sign in the direction of the arrow(s) until the next parking sign. Or, if none, the end of the block.
- The length of a bus stop zone has nothing to do with the length of a bus (about 42 feet). It is only about the distance between a bus stop sign and the next parking sign.
Or how about the meaning of a safety zone? Have you read anything unclear about the description of a safety zone (no standing violation)?
Standing is not permitted between a safety zone and the adjacent curb or within thirty feet of points on the curb immediately opposite the ends of a safety zone.” C’mon man!
See, NYC Traffic Rules 4-08(f)(6)The Evil empire
I’ve found some challenging parking ambushes that would hoodwink the most experienced drivers. In the same vein, let’s solve these parking riddles and save our hard-earned dough.
Table of contents
Bus lane and Bus stop signs
Yikes. This block in Brooklyn has a bus lane and a bus stop. The Bus lane is restricted to buses only between 7 am and 7 pm on all days except Sundays.
The arrow on the bus stop sign points to the bus lane sign but does not point towards the opposite end of the block. So, only the bus lane extends the entire length of the block (not the bus stop).
Is it safe for a driver to:
- Drive in the bus lane on a Saturday and make the first available right-hand turn?
- Drive in the bus lane on Sunday for three blocks?
- Park his car to the right of the bus stop sign on a Monday at 4 pm?
- Park his car to the left of the bus stop sign on Monday at 8 pm?
- Stop temporarily and drop off a passenger to the right of the bus stop sign and in the bus lane on Tuesday at 10 am?
Bus lane and bus stop analysis
- Drive in the bus lane on a Saturday and make the first available right-hand turn? YES
- Drive in the bus lane on Sunday for three blocks? YES
- Park her car to the right of the bus stop sign on a Monday at 4 pm? NO
- Park his car to the left of the bus stop sign on Monday at 8 pm? YES
- Stop temporarily and drop off a passenger, and skedaddle to the right of the bus stop sign and in the bus lane on Tuesday at 10 am? YES
Old or New gotcha poles
As for the old gotcha pole to the left_fuhgeddaboudit!
Meanwhile, is it safe to park a passenger vehicle to the left of the new gotcha pole above, on a:
- Tuesday at 6:30 pm?
- Sunday at 10 am?
- Wednesday at 8:30 am?
- Friday at 6 am?
- Pay for parking on a Saturday at 7 am?
New gotcha pole analysis
- Tuesday at 6:30 pm? YES
- Sunday at 10 am? YES
- Wednesday at 8:30 am? NO
- Friday at 6 am? YES
- Pay for parking on a Saturday at 7 am? NO
Fire hydrant and street cleaning sign
Can you ever park safely to the right of the street cleaning sign, regardless of the day and time?
Can you park to the left of the street cleaning sign on a non-street cleaning day as long as you are 10 feet from the fire hydrant?
Fire hydrant and street cleaning sign analysis
- Can you ever park safely to the right of the street cleaning sign, regardless of the day and time? NO
- Can you park to the left of the street cleaning sign on a non-street cleaning day as long as you are 10 feet from the fire hydrant? NO (you must park 15 feet from the fire hydrant)
You may want to check out this blog post about a sign that permits parking within 15 feet of a fire hydrant.
Three parking signs on a gotcha pole
Is it safe to park a passenger chariot to the right of these three signs on Mondays at:
- 8:15 am?
- 4:30 pm?
- 7: am?
- 6 am?
- 5 pm for three hours?
three signs on a gotcha pole analysis
- 8:15 am? NO
- 4:30 pm? YES
- 7: 00 am? NO
- 6 am? YES
- 5 pm for three hours? YES
It’s one thing to view parking ambushes on your computer. On the other hand, it is different to look at these Rubik cubes in NYC traffic and decide whether it is safe to park there.
For example, take the bus lane/bus sign conundrum. A driver is required to make the first right-hand turn after entering an active bus lane. But, since the bus lane is not active on Sundays, you can keep driving past the first intersection.
A bus lane is a no-standing zone. So, a driver can stop, drop and skedaddle immediately in an active bus lane. Likewise, a driver can do the same in a bus stop zone (a bus stop zone is active all days and all times). However, if it were me, I would not stop, drop, and go in either of those two parking ticket traps.
How about parking within 15 feet of a fire hydrant with a street cleaning sign nearby?
Would you mind not doing it? Many of my wonderful clients conflated the permission granted by a street cleaning sign to park on certain days with permission on those days to park within 15 feet of a fire hydrant. Believe me, that is not the intention of a street cleaning sign. Fire hydrants are not within the scope of a parking sign’s grant of immunity.
Meanwhile, a warrior or cop will be happy to issue a parking ticket. And, a judge will find you guilty!`
How’d you do with the three signs on a gotcha pole? Don’t forget that school days can be any day of the week that activity occurs. The signs do not limit the time you can park to the signs’ right (only to the left).
In conclusion, have any of youse guys been ambushed by a parking sign conundrum? If so, and you have some photos, please send ’em in, and I’ll post them.