Parking on the Wrong Side

Park Wrong SideHave you noticed the growing tendency of lazy drivers who are now crossing over oncoming lanes of traffic to stop in front of particular addresses? It used to be that I would happen to notice people parked facing the wrong way in front of houses but now a week doesn't go by where I come nearly face to face in a game of parking chicken with a driver who has decided to cross over the center line to stop in front of a house. I'm sure it's only a matter of time until one of these drivers causes a serious collision.

This reader raises a valid point. Our traffic system is based on the rule that we occupy the right hand half of the highway when we drive. Very few drivers are allowed to operate on the "wrong side" which means that most of us can only use the left side to pass in safety, if the right side is closed by construction or when we are traveling on a one way street. As experienced drivers this is what we expect of others and will react properly to.

Stopping, standing and parking are not governed by convenience either. Drivers cannot do any of the three except on the right hand side of the highway with the vehicle parallel to the edge of the roadway. If there is a curb, the vehicle must be within 30 cm of it.

When I stopped drivers for doing this it was obvious that a small number had not considered their actions. After reminding them of their duty as a responsible driver I suspect it didn't happen again. Others had clearly made the decision to disobey, most often citing their view that no other traffic was around.

This selfish behaviour is dangerous. It was the number 5 factor in fatal collisions and caused 585 injury collisions during 2005 in British Columbia.


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