Drivers in Virginia need to make sure that they are following all of the rules of the road when they are behind the wheel, as well as when they are getting ready to park their vehicle. If you park in the wrong area, you could get a fine. You may also have your vehicle towed. It is important to know the basic rules of parking in the state so you do not run into any issues while parking. First, you will want to start with the colored curb zones.
The colored curbs
When you see a white curb, it means you are able to stop in the zone, but only long enough to pick up or drop off passengers. Once you finish, you need to move your vehicle out of the area.
In most places in Virginia, red markings on the curb are not used. However, there are some communities that use them, and they will typically indicate that it is a no parking zone. When you do see a red curb, it means that you are not allowed to stop, stand, or park in the area.
If you see a curb that is painted yellow, it means you are only allowed to stop long enough to load or unload your vehicle. In addition, you are required to stay with your vehicle.
If you see blue markings on the curb or the pavement, it is indicating that the space is for use by people with disabilities. You will need to have special plates or placards in order to use these spaces.
Other parking rules to know
Drivers are not allowed to double park their vehicle. This happens when you park on the roadway side of a vehicle that is already parked. You cannot park on crosswalks or sidewalks. If there is a road with no curb present, you are not allowed to park on the hard surface (the travel area) of the road. You should always try to get as far off of the road as possible and make sure that the traffic flowing in both directions is able to see your vehicle.
You cannot park within 15 feet of a fire hydrant, or within 20 feet of an intersection. Do not park in bike lanes either. These are for bikes, and if you park there, it would force them to have to go out onto the main road or up onto the sidewalk. You have to park at least 50 feet away from a railroad crossing.
If there are fire trucks and equipment answering an alarm, you are not allowed to park within 500 feet of where they have stopped and are dealing with the emergency.
Your goal should be to make sure that you are never blocking traffic or creating a hazard when you are parking. Always pay attention to the signs in the area as well, as they can let you know where you can and cannot park many times. Follow the regulations and laws in your local area, and you will not have to worry about getting fined.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as The Guide to Colored Curb Zone Laws in Virginia and was authored by Valerie Johnston.