Its funny how some people become overwhelmed with excitiment when visiting garage sales. Especially when they know theres bargains to be had, or they're making their best efforts to beat other early birds. This excitement at times can lead to mishaps or even accidents, and this is true in particular when it comes to safe or sensible parking.
If you've ever driven down a street or by a house thats holding a garage sale, quite often you may have experienced vehicular congestion. Cars on footpaths, across driveways, parked facing the wrong way, or even in the middle of the road! Remember, just because youre only "popping in" for a quick look, doesnt mean you can park anywhere.
Be sure to park safely, and ensure that you do your bit to prevent accidents or inconveniences.
Here are the Top 10 Garage Sale Sensible Parking Tips.
1. Always read and comply with traffic signs.
You would think this would be a no brainer. Yet it seems that local laws and traffic signs become optional when simpy pulling in at a garage sale for a "quick look". No parking, no standing, loading zone etc are to be complied with, no exceptions!
2. Always make sure that your car is safely locked.
Jumping out of your car with all the windows down to rush in for that $2 toaster, can lead to some embarrasing moments. Especially if youve parked a little way down the street. You certainly dont want to return to find your belongings are gone, or even worse - your car!
3. Common parking courtesy.
Dont park on someones prize winning lawn or across their driveway. Be considerate and park where there is allocated space.
4. Do not park facing approaching traffic (that is, on the wrong side of the road)
It amazes me, just how many people actually do this. It really is quite dangerous, especially on narrow suburban roads. You wouldnt do it on a highway, why do it on someones street? If there is inadequate space to park facing the flow of the traffic, then continue onwards until you find a safe spot. Parking facing opposing traffic can lead to dangerous accidents.
5. Apply your handbrake and make sure the car is in park!
Again, its that "Im just popping in quickly!" mindset that can lead to stupidity. Jumping out of the car, with the engine running and the handbrake inproperly applied, can lead to an absolute disaster. Imagine returning to where you think you left your car, only to find it down the road in a neighbours swimming pool! Turn your car off, put it in park, and apply the handbrake!
6. Parking in Disabled bays
Nothing frustrates me more than seeing able bodied people, quickly park in a disabled spot then rush across the road to do something. There really is no excuse for this. Be considerate and do not park in disabled parking spot bays! You know why!
7. Pavement parking.
Pavement parking can cause inconvenience and is hazardous to pedestrians, visually impaired, disabled and elderly people or those with prams or pushchairs as the person may have to step on to the highway to avoid the obstruction thus putting themselves in danger. It may also cause damage to kerbs, pavements or the services infrastructure underneath. You should only park on the pavement where there are exemptions and will be marked by signs as above. The first sign allows you to park on the footway whereas the second sign indicates the end of the footway parking exemption.
8. Short term parking.
In most cases, where-ever you may pull up to "have a quick look" means just that. Short term, or quick. In most cases, yes, you may be able to park across the road while you check out whats for sale at the garage sale, but it certainly doesnt mean parking there for hours on end.
9. Consider the neighbours.
Parking across the road, especially at garage sales, means parking on adjoining properties, which in turn means, parking on neighbours yards or frontages. Be mindful not to block them in and leave adequate space for them to be able to manouvre their vehicles in and out of the their properties safely.
10. Parking on corners and blind spots.
This is all about SAFETY. Be sure to leave enough distance from corners and ALWAYS ensure adequate visibility for both oncoming and passing traffic. When you cant see them, they cant see you, which will only lead to either an accident or an insurance claim!