Can you parallel park?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 24, 2011 3:47 PM GMT
    Sadly, this 30 year old man can not. I think I've done it correctly and quickly on the first or second try maybe twice in my life. Usually it takes me about 5 min. No, I'm lying, it takes me a much longer time.

    Did you have to take a road test when you received your driving license if you were under the age of 18 at that time?

    Do you live in an area where all you have is parallel parking?
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    Nov 24, 2011 3:52 PM GMT
    http://www.dmv.org/how-to-guides/parallel-parking.php

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    Nov 24, 2011 3:55 PM GMT
    we actually got thrown out of the parking lot by the securi-cop before i could practice parallel parking in driver's ed and i don't think they required us to do it for the test either, nonetheless i am an excellent parallel parker having done it every day the last two years of high school (no off street parking for students)
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Nov 24, 2011 3:58 PM GMT
    I can, but I'm slow at it because I don't do it often.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:00 PM GMT
    yep. easy breezy.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:04 PM GMT
    carminea saidDid you have to take a road test when you received your driving license if you were under the age of 18 at that time?

    Yes, on a closed State course when I was 17 in 1966, the minimum age there. Parallel parking was one of the requirements, and I passed it with a manual transmission. I had also taken a high school driver's ed course, using a dual-control car. Few US schools have them now. Thanks to getting good instruction I can still parallel park without a problem.

    Incidentally, more & more cars will now parallel park themselves, you just control the gas & brake. The car tells you when you're in position on the street (and also warns you if the space is too small), and then takes over control of the steering wheel as you back into the space. Even some rather ordinary Fords have this option available.
  • mustangd

    Posts: 434

    Nov 24, 2011 4:05 PM GMT
    yup, easypeasey
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:05 PM GMT
    carminea saidSadly, this 30 year old man can not. I think I've done it correctly and quickly on the first or second try maybe twice in my life. Usually it takes me about 5 min.

    Did you have to take a road test when you received your driving license if you were under the age of 18 at that time?


    I'm almost 30 (2icon_cool.gif and can't either so don't feel bad, LOL!
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:06 PM GMT
    Like a boss! I'm good at getting into tight spaces icon_smile.gif
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:07 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    Incidentally, more & more cars will now parallel park themselves, you just control the gas & brake. The car tells you when you're in position, and then takes over control of the steering wheel. Even some rather ordinary Fords have this option available.


    I don't like these features on cars. Especially the enabler-type features on newer Mercedes Benz. Basically says its OK to push yourself to the limit or drive when you shouldn't because this car will tell you the moment it becomes too dangerous for you to drive. Its letting the driver think they don't need to worry about it.

    Personally i could never drive a car with blind spot warning. I make neck-snapping lane changes and the system would drive me nuts beeping all the time.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:07 PM GMT
    Yes, and to the left, on a hill, with a stick.

    Why?

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    Nov 24, 2011 4:10 PM GMT
    Yes. Just takes practice. I didn't watch the video, but from the text below, looks like the instructions were only for the right side of the street. On a one-way street on the left everything would be done the opposite, so that should be practiced as well.

    What worked for me were simple rules:
    1. Starting position important - even with the car in front, couple of feet away.
    2. Start backing up and turn the wheel so the car makes a 45 degree angle to the curb.
    3. As soon as the front of your car is just past the rear of the car in front, start straightening out the car.
    4. Learn which way to turn wheel after parking if on hill with or without curb. No need to memorize a lot here either. Just imagine if the brakes failed, would the car go into the middle of the street or not.

    Same instructions for either side of the street! No memorizing turn left, turn right.

    Similar to teaching someone to land an airplane. All different kinds of visual cues you can give. Different ones work for different people.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:13 PM GMT
    Yes. Having lived in DC for years and years and now Boston..... easy as pie. Just needs practice.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:13 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    carminea saidDid you have to take a road test when you received your driving license if you were under the age of 18 at that time?

    Incidentally, more & more cars will now parallel park themselves, you just control the gas & brake. The car tells you when you're in position on the street (and also warns you if the space is too small), and then takes over control of the steering wheel as you back into the space. Even some rather ordinary Fords have this option available.

    When my 2-yr old car expires, I will get one of those.

    Incidentally, MIT University Transport Center did a study on this and it found:
    When using the Active Park Assist feature, there was a 12 beats per minute reduction in heart rate while parking and an average 3.4 beats per minute reduction in anticipating parking, in comparison to manual parking.

    Additionally, 40% of women rate themselves Fair or poor and 21% of men say the same thing. 31% of drivers will avoid it.

    I have tried the things the video says, but I always end up 2-3 ft away from the curb.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:17 PM GMT
    Having not learned to drive 'til I was 23 or so (and on stick), I was surprised to find I'm actually quite good at it. Don't know why/how. icon_wink.gif
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:18 PM GMT
    that's why I made sure to get a car with back up sensors.

    I can parallel park anything with those.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:19 PM GMT
    a common problem in the US with people and parallel parking is also the percentage of people who drive large cars without needing to. I didn't mind pp'ing my Ranger because it was small and you could see exactly what you're doing but an F150? Suburban? Land Cruiser? god help you! People drive huge, beast cars and then complain about gas prices and parking spaces. you can fit the same number of kids into a wagon with a rear-facing fold-up as you can an Escalade ESV!!
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:19 PM GMT
    Yes, we have to do it to pass our test - though it's random whether you actually will need to do it on your test or not - basically, you have to do two from parallel park, left corner reverse, bay parking and turn in the road. I passed my test on the third attempt and had all of them at one time or another!
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:25 PM GMT
    RoadsterRacer87 said
    Art_Deco said
    Incidentally, more & more cars will now parallel park themselves, you just control the gas & brake. The car tells you when you're in position, and then takes over control of the steering wheel. Even some rather ordinary Fords have this option available.


    I don't like these features on cars.

    Why not? It's very simple to operate. As you drive along and see a curb parking space, you signal, slow down, and press a button on the console. The car tells you when you're in position and to stop (or warns you if the space if too small to fit).

    You put the auto transmission into Reverse, and take your hands off the steering wheel. You slowly ease the car backwards yourself, and the car operates the steering. It then alerts you when it's time to pull forward, so you stop, shift to Drive, and inch forward, the car still doing the steering for you, and then it tells you to stop. Oh, and it also alerts you if some pedestrian darts between your car and the others during this maneuver, so that you could almost do it blindfolded once you begin. I don't see anything wrong with this system.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:25 PM GMT
    Born to parallel park... just add it to the list of things I'm amazing at icon_smile.gif
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:35 PM GMT
    same here, without touching the curb or anything else either, sooooo easy. If you need park assist, cut up your license and return the car to the nearest scrapper ( for having retard enabling features like park assist)
  • SEM8806

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    Nov 24, 2011 4:36 PM GMT
    Yes, I can parallel park. My grandpa taught me how when I had my learner's permit and I've never forgotten. I actually find it easier to parallel park a larger vehicle, such as my parents' Ford Expedition. The higher field of vision allows you to approximate the front of the car more accurately and out the back you know where the back glass is is basically the back of the vehicle. It is occasionally hard to approximate the front end of the vehicle behind you,*if* it's really low. Maybe it's just because I learned on a Chevy TrailBlazer, but I've never had a problem with it, especially in my own car (Oldsmobile Intrigue).
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:37 PM GMT
    Yes. In DC, its a way of life.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:39 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    RoadsterRacer87 said
    Art_Deco said
    Incidentally, more & more cars will now parallel park themselves, you just control the gas & brake. The car tells you when you're in position, and then takes over control of the steering wheel. Even some rather ordinary Fords have this option available.


    I don't like these features on cars.

    Why not? It's very simple to operate. As you drive along and see a curb parking space, you signal, slow down, and press a button on the console. The car tells you when you're in position and to stop (or warns you if the space if too small to fit).

    You put the auto transmission into Reverse, and take your hands off the steering wheel. You slowly ease the car backwards yourself, and the car operates the steering. It then alerts you when it's time to pull forward, so you stop, shift to Drive, and inch forward, the car still doing the steering for you, and then it tells you to stop. Oh, and it also alerts you if some pedestrian darts between your car and the others during this maneuver, so that you could almost do it blindfolded once you begin. I don't see anything wrong with this system.


    to be fair, i kinda gave a reason in my explanation. but its because we, as a nation, already have a large uneducated driving populace. People from some European nations would laugh at our average driving "education" system. Lets just be honest. There are a lot of people here who have no business being behind the wheel. The same people who get nervous/intimidated by parallel parking, a fairly innocuous activity in its own right, probably don't do very well with more dangerous things, like changing lanes on the freeway or passing on the left. Maybe drivers in your neck of the woods are more competent but here i sometimes wish i had the power to revoke licenses.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 24, 2011 4:40 PM GMT
    Yes, I can. I was rather surprised at how quickly I grasped it. I was better at parallel parking than regular parking!

    It's not required on the Virginia driving test, but it's definitely helpful to know how to do it especially in downtown areas and most of DC. I'm glad my instructor taught me.