Here’s your etiquette quiz for the day….
You get home from work. You park your car on your street. You get out of the car and notice that you could have pulled forward a few more feet. What do you do?
- “I never check whether I parked properly.”
- Go in the house and have dinner.
- Get back in the car and pull up.
If you answered (c), give yourself a gold star.
On-street parking is a scarce resource, especially in a city like Boston. If you leave a few feet of wasted space at one end of your car, there’s a good chance that you’ve ruined a space at the other end.
On a related note, if you’re looking to park and you come upon a long stretch of empty curb (a miracle!), parking exactly in the middle is the wrong answer. Put your car at one end or the other of the empty space, making it likely that more people will be able to park in the remaining space.
All this is obvious, you say? I’m afraid not, judging from what I’ve seen in the eight years I’ve been living in a house with on-street parking.
Pull up a few feet! Well put. And can we include the pull up a few feet to include turn lanes.
Many roads with two lanes in each direction have a third lane for left turns at intersections. This turn lane may have space for 10 cars. However, if drivers in the left turn lane do not pull up a few feat to the cars in front of them, then space may be wasted. The result of drivers waiting to turn leaving five to 15 feet wastes the space and fewer other drives can enter the left turn lane. Often the last driver trying to enter the left turn lane is compelled to leave the rear end of their car in the straight through lane, blocking traffic.
The opportunity for additional drivers to make the left turn and also the straight through on the subsequent green light is diminished. The total number of cars that can make it through on the green light gets limited and, one could say, increases traffic congestion. It’s all about getting as many cars through the intersection as possible.
My Audi A8, having a “high performance engine” (read that as royal pain in the tush) starts up with a very rich fuel mixture. If I start the car and then turn it right back off without giving the extra fuel a chance to burn off, everything gets gunked up and I can’t restart my car or I end up not having all my cylinders firing. I’ve had to have it towed to the dealer’s three times over this, so it really is serious. So anyways, if you see a pearl colored 98 Audi A8 parked inaccurately around Boston, don’t think too poorly of me…I’d move it if I could!
People park in the street?
I’d park in the driveway, silly.
-Silly in Suburbia