Traffic Tip: Stopping, standing, or parking prohibited in certain places

This week's traffic tip deals with Texas Transportation Code 545.302.

Sec. 545.302, stopping, standing or parking prohibited in certain places.

Why this specific code and how does it relate to driving in Victoria?

Although this entire section of the Texas Transportation Code is very important, I would like to concentrate on section 8, which addresses stopping in an intersection.

I have received numerous complaints in reference to vehicles stopping in the intersection of Burning Tree Street and Northampton Circle.

Vehicles are getting backed up on Burning Tree Street awaiting their turn to turn onto Santa Barbara to either drop off or pick up their children from DeLeon Elementary School.

This is not only obstructs the residents of The Estates of Belltower or Burning Tree from entering or exiting their neighborhoods, but it is also against the law.

(a) An operator may not stop, stand, or park a vehicle:

(1) on the roadway side of a vehicle stopped or parked at the edge or curb of a street;

(2) on a sidewalk;

(3) in an intersection;

(4) on a crosswalk;

(5) between a safety zone and the adjacent curb or within 30 feet of a place on the curb immediately opposite the ends of a safety zone, unless the governing body of a municipality designates a different length by signs or markings;

(6) alongside or opposite a street excavation or obstruction if stopping, standing, or parking the vehicle would obstruct traffic;

(7) on a bridge or other elevated structure on a highway or in a highway tunnel;

(8) on a railroad track; or

(9) where an official sign prohibits stopping.

(b) An operator may not, except momentarily to pick up or discharge a passenger, stand or park an occupied or unoccupied vehicle:

(1) in front of a public or private driveway;

(2) within 15 feet of a fire hydrant;

(3) within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection;

(4) within 30 feet on the approach to a flashing signal, stop sign, yield sign, or traffic-control signal located at the side of a roadway;

(5) within 20 feet of the driveway entrance to a fire station and on the side of a street opposite the entrance to a fire station within 75 feet of the entrance, if the entrance is properly marked with a sign; or

(6) where an official sign prohibits standing.

(c) An operator may not, except temporarily to load or unload merchandise or passengers, park an occupied or unoccupied vehicle:

(1) within 50 feet of the nearest rail of a railroad crossing; or

(2) where an official sign prohibits parking.

(d) A person may stop, stand, or park a bicycle on a sidewalk if the bicycle does not impede the normal and reasonable movement of pedestrian or other traffic on the sidewalk.

(e) A municipality may adopt an ordinance exempting a private vehicle operated by an elevator constructor responding to an elevator emergency from Subsections (a)(1), (a)(5), (a)(6), (a)(9), (b), and (c).

(f) Subsections (a), (b), and (c) do not apply if the avoidance of conflict with other traffic is necessary or if the operator is complying with the law or the directions of a police officer or official traffic-control device.

(g) If the governing body of a municipality determines that it is necessary to improve the economic development of the municipality's central business district and that it will not adversely affect public safety, the governing body may adopt an ordinance regulating the standing, stopping, or parking of a vehicle at a place described by Subsection (a)(1), other than a road or highway in the state highway system, in the central business district of the municipality as defined in the ordinance. To the extent of any conflict between the ordinance and Subsection (a)(1), the ordinance controls.

The Victoria Police Department Traffic Safety Unit invites citizens to inform us of any traffic issues that you observe. The easiest way to do this is go to the Victoria Police Department's website, then go to the VPD Customer Service Request tab in the center of the page and follow the directions.

If you have a traffic law question, contact Senior Police Officer David Brogger, Victoria Police Department Traffic Safety Unit, 361-485-3700.