Knowing how and where to park legally in Minnesota is just as important as knowing the rules of being on the road, such as the speed limits and proper signaling and lane changing procedures. If you park in the wrong area, you could get a citation and a fine, and you could even have your vehicle towed. Following the parking laws will reduce that risk. Keep in mind that there could be some different regulations and laws based on the city and town where you live. However, they will generally be very similar to the rules enacted by the state.
The parking rules and regulations
When you are properly parked parallel to a curb, your wheels on the curb side should be no more than 12 inches from the curb. There are many locations where you are not allowed to park. Many of them are common sense, but you will want to know the specifics so you do not get a fine.
You cannot park within an intersection, on a crosswalk, or on a sidewalk. You are not allowed to park within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection, and you have to be at least 30 feet away from stop signs, flashing lights, or traffic signals at the side of public roads. You have to be at least 50 feet away from the nearest rail of a railroad crossing. You need to make sure you are parked at least 10 feet away from fire hydrants.
If there is any excavation or street construction occurring, or if there is any other obstruction in the roadway, you need to make sure that parking in the area would not obstruct traffic in any way. Do not park on a bridge or a highway tunnel. You are not allowed to double park either. Double parking is parking on the road side of a vehicle that is stopped or parked at the curb already. This would slow traffic down, and it could be dangerous. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that it’s okay if you are only there for a few seconds. It is still illegal.
If the curb is painted yellow, you cannot park there. You cannot park in front of mailboxes either. You will need to refer to the ordinances in your city to determine just how far away from them you will need to park. Also, do not park at the street end of a driveway.
If you receive a fine for a parking infraction, the price can vary based on the location where it occurred. Towns and cities will create their own fine schedules. When you adhere to the rules discussed here, you can reduce the chance of getting a ticket, and that can help to put your mind at ease.
Before you park anywhere, it is a good idea to check for signs that could indicate whether you are allowed to park in the area or not. Being vigilant will reduce your risk of getting a ticket.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Minnesota Parking Laws: Understanding the Basics and was authored by Valerie Johnston.