Motorcycle parking laws here in California can have their quirks, especially in and around the larger metropolises. And many times, they can be especially confusing. Parking rules often vary based on the municipality and not knowing the applicable laws may result in you coming out to find a parking ticket, or worse, your motorcycle impounded. While parking in California can be a hassle, paying hefty fines and getting your vehicle out of impoundment are even bigger ones.
Motorcycle Parking Laws: California
With nearly 900,000 registered motorcycles in California, motorcyclists must comply with laws specific to their vehicles, such as insurance, licensing, and protective gear. It’s important to note that motorcycle parking laws can be vehicle-specific here as well. While motorcycles can park almost anywhere that a car can in California, there are some parking laws specific to motorcycles to be aware of.
Where Can a Motorcycle Be Parked in California?
California Vehicle Code 22500 is the state statute that sets out the laws regarding parking, stopping, or leaving a vehicle in particular locations, including motorcycle parking laws. While bikers can park their motorcycles in most places designated for other motor vehicles, they also must comply with the same rules and consider motorcycle-specific ones.
- On a sidewalk — Motorcycles may not be parked on a sidewalk at any time unless it is an emergency or in compliance with police instructions. Furthermore, the law states that no portion of the motorcycle can extend over a sidewalk over 10 inches, including parts of the motorcycles required in its operation, such as its lights, mirrors, or other devices or gear.
- On the street — One wheel or fender must touch the right curb when a motorcyclist chooses to park on a two-way street. On a one-way street, one wheel or fender must touch either a left or right-hand curb, depending on which side of the street parking occurs.
- Sharing metered spaces — In California, the sharing of metered spaces will vary by municipality since they govern parking meters and their associated spaces. Consequently, a motorcyclist will want to be familiar with the laws of the specific municipality and how they will be enforced before assuming that sharing a metered space is allowed.
- Parking in between cars — This is another case where the municipality will determine whether this is lawful for a motorcycle in their jurisdiction. When allowed, the motorcyclist must only park between the other vehicles if all concerned have adequate room to get out.
- Parking in parking garages — While it may seem logical that a motorcycle should be allowed to park in a parking garage, this is not always true, especially in the case of a private parking facility. Before parking a motorcycle in a parking garage, a motorcyclist should understand the rules of the particular facility.
While these are matters of motorcycle parking law in California, there are also matters of motorcycle parking etiquette. Make sure to keep these in mind when parking your motorcycle in California.
- Leave plenty of room for others in designated motorcycle areas to allow the greatest possible room for others and space for everyone to come and leave.
- Don’t park too close to accessible parking spaces as drivers with disabilities often need that additional room to enter and leave their vehicles.
- Share the space. When allowed, side-by-side parking should be encouraged to allow for more parking availability.
Adherence to motorcycle parking laws with an added touch of courtesy can go a long way in keeping you lawful while respecting your other riders.
Potential Penalties for Motorcycle Parking Law Violations in California
Like parking violations for any other type of vehicle, motorcycle parking violations will result in various penalties, depending on the violation and the number of offenses you have had. Penalties can include fines, assessment fees, and even impoundment. Fines can be hefty and getting your bike out of impoundment even more so. In the end, it is far cheaper and less hassle for you to follow our motorcycle parking laws instead of paying the higher price of not following them.
Comparative Negligence in California Accident Claims
What’s worse than hefty parking fees? Not being able to collect compensation if you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident.
California is an at-fault state, meaning the party who is at fault for an accident is liable. But under our comparative negligence laws, an injured party’s compensation will be reduced by the amount of their percentage of fault. In other words, if you were found partially at fault for an accident due to a violation of motorcycle parking laws, this could significantly reduce your recovery.
If You Have Been Injured
If you or someone you love has been injured in a motorcycle accident in California, contact the skilled motorcycle injury accident lawyers at Riderz Law. We are experienced lawyers and equally experienced motorcycle enthusiasts. Defending our own is what we do best. Contact us for a no-cost consultation to understand your rights and options after a motorcycle accident.