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Motorcycles have a very small profile and are easy to maneuver in tight places.
They’re the perfect way to get around in busy cities, and typically allow you to find parking easier than you would if you were driving a car.
A common thought that can cross your mind is whether or not it’s OK to park your motorcycle on sidewalks.
No matter where you ride, the sidewalk is meant for pedestrians.
It’s usually not allowed for any type of vehicle, including motorcycles, to block the sidewalk.
So, Can Motorcycles Park on the Sidewalk?
The locals rules and regulations in each state may vary on the issue. But most states don’t allow motorcycles parking on sidewalks. Doing so can result in a fine or having your bike towed.
However, depending on where you are, it can be common to find motorcycles parked on the sidewalk.
But, these riders do so at their own risk.
Parking on the sidewalk is typically illegal, no matter the circumstances. You can’t get away from the offense forever.
Of course, the exception for parking a motorcycle on the sidewalk would be on private property. But even in that case, you need the permission of the owner.
Parking a Motorcycle On a Sidewalk in California
According to California vehicle code 22500, it’s illegal to park a motorcycle on the sidewalk.
Furthermore, it’s also prohibited to park a vehicle or motorcycle such that any part of the body protrudes more than 10 inches into the sidewalk.
Nevertheless, you may find some municipalities relaxed in enforcing the rule.
But it’s always safe to follow what the traffic laws stipulate.
Reasons Not to Park on the Sidewalk
If you’re in a hurry or just don’t want to look for a proper parking space, parking your bike on the sidewalk can be tempting.
Here are some reasons why you shouldn’t.
1. Cars and Motorcycles Governed by the Same Set of Traffic Rules
The same rules that govern cars apply to motorcycles.
And since vehicles aren’t permitted to park on sidewalks, motorcycles must follow the same rules.
Though it’s tempting to do so and sometimes you can be lucky to get away unnoticed, you never know when you can attract a ticket or other unwanted attention.
2. Blocking Pedestrians
Despite its size, parking your motorcycle on a sidewalk is likely to hinder the movement of pedestrians.
That holds true for partially or fully blocking the sidewalk.
Blocking the path causes inconvenience to the visually impaired, pedestrians using strollers, and people in wheelchairs.
Not only can it carry a fine, you risk angering a pedestrian who may want to cause damage to your bike.
3. Increase Chances of Damage to Your Bike
Despite many riders being OK with partially blocking of the sidewalk, it isn’t safe.
The thing that may be in most danger is your bike itself.
Often the act may arouse the anger of some pedestrians passing by the motorcycle. They may take it upon themselves to knock over or otherwise damage your bike.
Also, kids passing by or playing on the bike can easily cause an accident. You could be held responsible for that.
4. You Risk Getting Ticketed or Towed
Parking on a privately owned sidewalk may seem non-offensive.
If you don’t seek the consent of the owner, a simple phone call to the police will result in a fine or having your bike towed.
Can Motorcycles Park in Front of Stores?
For privately-owned premises, you are at the mercy of the store’s management.
Parking there may land you a parking ticket or go unnoticed.
That’s why it’s wise to seek permission from the manager before parking.
The truth is unless the store has a designated area for motorcycle parking, you will be at risk.
Regardless of what you park in front, the sidewalk is still considered to be in the public right of way in most places.
Where Can You Park Your Motorcycle Safely?
If you need to park your motorcycle, then look for an area where it’s legal to do so.
One good place to look is somewhere you’ll be able to lock your bike.
Alternatively, look for a garage owner that’s operating a car and bike parking business.
Further, you can also park your motorcycle in the usual car parking lots and parking spots.
Though, some entitled car drivers do look down upon motorcycles parking alongside vehicles. They claim motorbikes don’t make use of optimal space usage.
Motorcycles have every right to park in a normal parking space to themselves.
When parking a motorcycle along the street, ensure that the back tire makes contact with the curb.