New York State Parking Laws You Need to Know

June 29, 2021

As a licensed driver in New York State, you must familiarize yourself with the state parking laws. This will definitely help you maneuver the daily urban traffic congestion issues.

Even more important for that aspiring driver who wants to know how to parallel park on my driving test in NY. Now that you’re done with school work, it’s time to prove that you understand every detail of the traffic and parking laws.

The NY Department of Motor Vehicles has enforced effective traffic and parking regulations to ensure the safety and convenience of every motorist.

Did you know that just as you put in the effort to understand the road signs and traffic laws, you have to do more in considering where to park your vehicle?

It won’t be in your best interest to violate parking regulations. You’ll not only attract a penalty but also a parking ticket and impounding fees.

So what do New York State parking laws entail?

Types of Parking in NY

Parking has various meanings which you must understand while living in New York.

When you encounter a ‘No Parking’ sign along the way, this just means that you’re allowed to make temporary stops to unload or load merchandise and passengers.

A ‘No Standing’ sign means that you should temporarily stop to unload or load passengers. Under no circumstances will you load or unload merchandise in this area.

If the sign reads ‘No Stopping,’ you should only stop when obeying traffic signs and signals or the police. It also means you can only stop to avoid conflict with another motorist.

Areas Where Parking Regulations Apply

The parking, stopping, or standing of vehicles applies in some areas and not others.

For example, your vehicle cannot park, stand or stop in these areas and circumstances;

  • Within five meters of a fire hydrant. This is unless you remain inside your vehicle in case you have to move it during an emergency. You can’t double-park your car, even if you are not staying long. It is a hazard, which makes it illegal.
  • Alongside a parked vehicle, which is considered as double parking.
  • On the sidewalk or in a crosswalk.
  • In an intersection. You can only park here when the sign or parking meter permits you to stand, stop or park.
  • On the railroad tracks.
  • Opposite or alongside construction, road excavations, or other obstructions if your parked, stopped, or standing vehicle will block traffic.
  • Within ten meters (30ft) of a pedestrian safety zone unless there’s another distance marked in that area for standing, stopping, or parking.
  • No parking in a tunnel or on a bridge either. 

In the state of New York, you are not allowed to park, stand or stop your vehicle in these areas;

  • Within six meters (20 ft.) of a crosswalk at an intersection.
  • In front of a driveway.
  • Within six meters (20 ft.) of a fire station driveway or 23 meters (75 ft.) on the opposite side of the road.
  • Within 10 meters (30 ft.) of a STOP sign, traffic light, or YIELD sign.
  • Along a curb that was cut down, constructed, or lowered to give access to the sidewalk.
  • The parking regulations also offer reserved parking facilities for people with disabilities. You can only use such facilities with a permit for people with disabilities. You should also be carrying a person with disability at the time of your parking.

Never park in the spaces reserved for the disabled without a license plate or permit. This also goes for out-of-state motorists.

Can One Park in Front of a Driveway?

In New York, it is illegal to park in front of a driveway, whether it’s public or private. This will land you a parking ticket, and your car will be towed.

However, you can park in front of a driveway if you are the building’s owner or tenant in that building with the driveway. The registration of your car should match the property’s address.

How Far Should Your Vehicle Be from the Curb When Parallel Parking?

The car should have a distance of between 12 and 16 inches from the curb. Make sure you center it between two other vehicles to allow for room for exiting the spaces. 

Parallel Parking the Right Way

The best way to parallel park is to find the right fit first (1 ½ times your vehicle’s length). When approaching the space, make sure you check the mirrors and turn on the proper signal. Only go when it’s safe and keep a safe distance of up to three feet from the next car’s side.

Get in the proper backing position and reverse the car slowly until the vehicle’s middle lines up with the other car’s rear bumper. 

When the way is clear for you, sharply cut the steering wheel toward the curb at a 45-degree angle. Go on until you spot the headlights of the vehicle behind you from the wing mirror on your side.

Turn the wheels back the opposite way and keep on backing until the car is aligned with the other cars and is parallel to the road edge or curb.

Finally, you can straighten and align the car until it’s parallel.

Can You Park Close to a junction?

The nearest distance to park to a junction is 32 feet (10 meters) except in a parking space authorized. This allows motorists coming from or turning into the junction to see the road they’re joining clearly. They’ll also see the hazards in front, like the cyclists and pedestrians.

Am I Allowed to Park Across My Driveway?

Never park your car on the pavement unless it’s in a marked bay. If your street has parking bays, you can park across your drive. Just make sure you don’t go beyond the marked bays to block the pavement.

What Should You Do Before Leaving the Parking Area?

Before leaving the parking space to join the traffic, always turn your head, look over your shoulder. Check for other motorists, cyclists, pedestrians, and bicyclists who can become a hazard for you.

When leaving parking spaces parallel to the curb, ensure to turn the wheel sharply to the right. Back up slowly then until the car is at an angle of 45 degrees from the curb.

Turn the wheel sharply again in a direction far from the curb and back. Do it slowly until the car is parallel to the curb. With the car in forward gear, center it in space.

Final Thoughts

Driving in New York State streets can be safe and comfortable if you adhere to the traffic and parking laws. 

As you strive to enhance road safety, remember to watch out for signs that indicate where you should or shouldn’t park. This will save you from penalties and clashes with the law.

At Pierre Paul, we teach you up-to-date driving skills to help be a responsible and safe driver. Enroll for driving lessons today.