Last week, I had a very close encounter with a traffic officer. I’d only been at work for about thirty minutes when I received a call from my building’s parking attendant. He informed me there was a traffic officer giving tickets to all the motorcycles parked on the sidewalk in front of the building. I hung up quickly, then jetted outside to move my motorcycle. I got there just in time too as the officer was busy inputting the license plate of the motorcycle parked behind me.
About an hour later, the parking attendant who tipped me off came by my office to make sure I’d moved my bike in time. I thanked him for the heads up, and then mused about why the officer was giving tickets in the first place since motorcyclists had been parking there for years. The attendant told me the law had changed in Los Angeles about motorcycles parking on the sidewalk.
I jumped on the internet and searched for answers regarding a change in parking. It turned out, there had been a vote this past June by the City Council making parking on the street in certain situations, or in a parkway, a violation. What I found interesting was the fact that parking on the sidewalk had been a parking violation all along, but in 2011 traffic officers started turning a blind eye to those parking on sidewalks or in parkways.
However, because of an increase in complaints by residents in more populated neighborhoods like Koreatown or McArthur Park, City Council had to address the growing problem. So, as of August 14th of this year, traffic officers have been ticketing all vehicles parked on sidewalks, or in pathways between curbs and parking garages.
One of my co-workers was ticketed on the day I was able to avoid getting one, and he was very upset. I feel like a lot of motorcyclists are unaware of the change regarding this particular parking violation. So, I wanted to pass the information along and encourage others to spread the word as well. I believe the ticket for this violation ranges from $58-$78.
Be sure to check any local laws before parking on the sidewalk in unfamiliar cities as well, since some cities are very strict about these rules. Private businesses can also control this, so exercise caution when choosing to park outside of a designated parking space.
Stay safe in these streets!