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Parking regulations explained

June 26, 2010
Adirondack Daily Enterprise

What people generally understand as "parking" is legally divided into three categories: parking, standing, and stopping. Each category has its own regulations.

A "No Parking" sign means you may stop only temporarily to load or unload merchandise or passengers. A "No Standing" sign means you may stop only temporarily to load or unload passengers only.

A "No Stopping" sign means you cannot stop there except to obey a traffic sign, signal or officer, or to avoid contact with other vehicles.

However, there are statewide rules not always indicated by signs. Except momentarily to pick up or discharge a passenger or passengers, it is illegal to stand or park a vehicle, whether occupied or not, in the following locations:

In our villages, the restriction that is perhaps most frequently violated is parking within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection or within 30 feet of a stop sign. The primary reason for this law is a matter of visibility. When another vehicle stops at a stop sign and someone is parked close to the intersection, it is more difficult for the stopped vehicle to see oncoming traffic. Also, a large parked vehicle near a stop sign could block another motorist's view of the stop sign, which could have tragic results.

Other situations where it is illegal to stop, stand, or park a vehicle except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic, or to comply with the directions of a police officer or a traffic control device, include:

There may be other situations where parking, standing, or stopping is prohibited by a regulatory sign (white with black lettering) and must be obeyed. Examples would include fire lanes, bus stops, taxi zones, loading and unloading zones, and many others.

For more articles on vehicle and traffic law and traffic safety, go to the Traffic Safety Board's website at: and click on the Traffic Safety Board on the pull-down menu for departments.

Dave Werner can be reached at



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