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Wrong-way Parking

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

McHenry County, Illinois

Wrong-way Parking

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
March 3, 2008

White Ford Ranger

What do you suppose a driver is thinking when he makes a decision to park on the wrong side of a street, so that the driver’s door is next to the curb? Or is he thinking?

Parking this way on a quiet residential street, in front of your own house, is one thing, but parking in a commercial district on a wide street is something else.

In this case the driver of a white Ford pick-up truck (license 62 937R), was parked facing the wrong way in front of 118 North Jefferson Street shortly before 6:00PM. By parking in this manner, the driver committed a number of traffic violations. He had to drive across the center line and across an oncoming lane of traffic in order to reach the curb on the west side of Jefferson Street. Then he parked at the curb in front of a business (his business?) with the driver’s door next to the curb. When he returned to the truck to drive away, he would again have to drive in the oncoming lane of traffic and across the roadway to get back on the correct side of the street.

Add to this that he was parked near an intersection and near a railroad crossing.

On other days I have noticed vehicles parked facing the wrong way on Jefferson Street in the same location. Drivers must know they can park there with impunity, so they continue to do so.

I wonder what might have happened, had a Woodstock Police officer passed by. Would he have noticed the illegal parking? Would he have issued a ticket? Would he have waited for the the driver leave the curb and drive on the wrong side of the road and then written a moving violation? Would he have knocked on the door at 118 and told the driver to move his vehicle?

Most drivers would not even allow themselves the thought of parking in this fashion.

Do you have a parking problem of this type in your neighborhood? Are you doing anything about it?

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