Parking A Car
It is always best, and safest, to park your car off the road or in a car park. If you have to park on the road, use your common sense and choose a safe place. Ask the questions:
- Is it safe?
- Is it convenient?
- Is it legal?
Road Signs and Markings
Road signs and markings will help you decide when and where you can park your car.
You must not park on:
- yellow lines during times of operation shown on nearby time plates
- double yellow lines
- the approach to pedestrian crossings
- school entrances
- within 10 metres of a junction
- bus stops, tram stops or taxi ranks
- the carriageway or hard shoulder of a motorway - unless in an emergency
- a cycle track or lane
- a bend
- in front of an entrance to a property
- where the curb has been lowered to help wheelchair users
- in any other restricted place.
Using hazard warning lights while parking or stopping in a no parking or restricted zone will not elevate you above the law.
Entrance into a controlled parking zone
End of controlled parking zone
Parking place for solo motorcyclists
Parking restricted to permit holders
School Entrance. No parking or waiting
A double yellow line indicates no waiting or parking at anytime.
A single yellow indicates no waiting or parking during times shown. The times shown will be on a sign near-by.
Bus stop. You must not park or stop at a bus stop.
Keep clear - do not block this part of the road.
Loading bay - keep clear.
Parking space reserved for vehicles named.
Waiting or parking is limited to the duration specified during the days and times shown.
When Parking On The Road
- always use the MSM/PSL routine. If necessary you must signal
- take some time to plan your parking manoeuvre
- manoeuvre your car slowly
- avoid touching the kerb with your tyres, as this can weaken them and cause possible faults
- leave enough room between vehicles, giving you and other drivers enough room to exit your cars
- always try and park on the left-hand side of the road
- look out for other road users before opening your door.
Parking On Hills
When you park facing uphill:
- park your car as close to the nearside kerb as you can (if there is one)
- leave your steering wheel turned to the right, so if the car rolls backwards, the front wheels will be stopped by the kerb
- if there is no kerb, leave your steering wheel turned to the left, so if your car rolls back it won't roll into the road
- leave the car in first gear
- apply the parking brake firmly.
When you park facing downhill:
- leave the steering wheel turned to the left, so the kerb will stop ant forward movement
- leave your car in reverse gear
- apply the parking brake firmly.
Parking A Car At Night
At night, you can park your car without lights on roads with a speed limit of 30 mph or less. Of course, you must comply with any local parking restrictions, and you must not park within 10 metres of a junction.
You must also park parallel to, and close to, the side of the road or in a designated place and facing in the direction of the traffic flow.
If you have to park on any other road, you should:
- park on the left-hand side of the road
- leave your side or parking lights on - unless a sign indicates that you shouldn't.
You must also never:
- leave your car parked on the right-hand side of the road (facing against the flow of traffic), except when parking in a one-way street.
Remember - it is always better to park your car away from such a road.
- switch off your engine
- apply the parking brake
Whenever you park at night, never leave your headlights on. In fact, even if your pull over and stop for a short while, you should turn your headlights off. It is an offence to leave them on as they can cause dazzle to on-coming drivers.