Truck Parking Policy / Bike Lanes?

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by Dana McIntosh, Sep 7, 2012.

  1. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member


    I'm a bicyclist in Washington DC. I commute to work using our Bike Lanes daily. I asked one of your drivers once why UPS is the #1 (in my experience) offender of parking (illegally) blocking the Bike Lane... and he answered that it was against company policy to pull all the way over to the curb! I cannot imagine this is true, but I've seen enough trucks parked blocking the bike lane with 3-4 feet of space between the vehicle and the curb, that it must at least be a culturally acceptable practice within UPS to place the convenience of the UPS driver above the safety of cyclists and other drivers. What is the company policy regarding where it is acceptable to park?

  2. over9five

    over9five Moderator Staff Member

    Hi Dana, welcome to Brown Cafe!

    I can't really answer the policy question, as I've never delivered on an area with bike lanes. I assume they run in the street alongside the sidewalk? I would guess most delivery truck drivers would answer that they are only there a minute. I know, not a good reason.

    Anyhow you say it is illegal to park on it, and I believe you. Have you ever asked a police officer, "Hey, why is that truck allowed to park there?"
  3. Indecisi0n

    Indecisi0n Well-Known Member

    The only reason I might not park really close to the curb is if I need to load a handcart and there is a close sign or overhang.
  4. BlackCat

    BlackCat Active Member

    In my experience bicyclists are the worst offenders of any and all moving violations. Blowing through stop signs and red lights, riding against traffic, etc. If they (bicyclists) want to be treated as vehicles they should start acting like one.
  5. UPSGUY72

    UPSGUY72 Well-Known Member

    We don't parallel park we get as close to the curb as we can when we pull up to a stop we also make sure they we are not going to get blocked in. It's all about time and making money for the shareholders. If you have a problem take it up with your local police department. I'm sure they will give you the answer you are looking for. But I suspect you already did and didn't get the answer you where looking for. Most police agency understand the nature of are business and don't issue tickets to UPS drivers. We are at most stops less than a minute...
  6. Coldworld

    Coldworld Taking it all back.....

    Maybe someone should ask old man Marty...wasnt he the driver that worked at UPS for like 65 years.he use to deliver in Washington dc back when he was the only car covering the whole metro dc area..
  7. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    We should not be blocking bicycle lanes; however, if it came down to blocking a bicycle lane or a travel lane I would block the bicycle lane.
  8. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member

    DC's Bike Lanes are to the right of the main vehicular lanes of travel, but to the left of parking lanes.

    It is illegal to block a bike lane, just like it is illegal to block any other lane of vehicular travel. According to Chief Lanier, they are actively issuing tickets for blocking these lanes. However I agree that Police are not enforcing people blocking these lanes as a priority, and flagging a cop down to ask him to write a parking ticket is probably not going to make you any friends on the force. The one time I tried the response was "Im on a call", as he walked into a sandwich shop and picked up lunch.

    The argument that many bicyclists ignore traffic laws, and therfore "we" can ignore laws too, makes no sense.. Lots of automobile drivers break the speed limit, does that somehow give me the right to stand in the road? In fact, blocking their legal lane of travel forces bicyclists to behave MORE erraticly.

    The statement "It's all about time and making money for the shareholders." really gets to the heart of my objection to this behavior. This indicates to me that it is not simply individual drivers deciding that their personal convenience takes a higher precedence than the safety of bicyclists and other drivers (who have to accommodate the bicyclists into the main lane of travel when the bike lanes are blocked). It seems that it is a company wide policy, or culture/unwritten policy to disregard the law and the safety of others in order to save a few minutes. I don't see FedEx or USPS trucks blocking these lanes nearly as often as I do see UPS.. they seem to find legal places to park, usually at the ends of the block rather than in the middle of it, which further indicates to me that this is a policy/cultural issue within UPS and not something that is an industry-wide practice.

    Is there a written policy about where it is acceptable to park? Is "Double parking" allowed? What about partially blocking an actual "car" lane? I can't imagine this is not laid out in some drivers handbook..
  9. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    We are strongly encouraged to park legally whenever possible; however, it is not always possible to do so. We are not taught to double park or to block bicycle lanes, fire lanes or fire hydrants. Having said that, we have a job to do and we do end up double parking, blocking bicycle lanes and parking in fire lanes. I am not saying this to try to justify this type of behavior---it happens. It's not as though we are parked there for an extended period of time.

    UPS, as well as most major delivery companies, pays a set fee each year in lieu of paying individual parking tickets in major cities. I have been told that we pay $2M per year in NYC alone. This saves both the company and the city time and money.

    I am not trying to minimize your concern as it is a valid one. All I am saying is that this is a battle not worth fighting. Dave.
  10. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member

    I realize I'm tilting at my personal windmill here.. I was just hoping that there was some policy being violated here, so that my recourse could be to push UPS to retrain these repeat offenders. In most of the cases I've seen, simply pulling all the way over to the curb (no parallel parking required), or continuing down-block for a few hundred feet, would allow the driver to do their job without infringing upon the law/rights & safety of others.
  11. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    I cannot explain why they are not pulled to the curb other than they may do this so as not to get blocked in themselves. As far as moving down the block a few hundred feet---it may be that the spot was not open when they pulled up.

    My son and I were in Boston recently and I was watching the UPS driver try to deliver along the streets near Fenway Park. I felt sorry for the guy but he did not seem the least bit fazed by it.

    I deliver in a smaller city (20K people) so this is not nearly as big of a problem here but there are times when I do have to double park, park in a fire lane or block a fire hydrant. I do this as a last resort and always with the intention of being in and out. I have received 3 parking tickets in 23 years.
  12. BlackCat

    BlackCat Active Member

    Nobody ever said "The argument that many bicyclists ignore traffic laws, and therfore "we" can ignore laws too". I said bicyclists are the biggest violators of moving violations. Before chastising UPS drivers, how about fixing your own community first.
  13. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member

    Before chastising bicyclists, how about fixing your own community first.

    see how much sense that makes? I'll be happy to talk to every bicyclist about safety if you'll be happy to talk to every UPS driver about not blocking bike lanes.

    I don't have a problem with other bicyclists risking their own lives being stupid and illegal.
    I DO have a problem with UPS drivers risking MY life being stupid and illegal.
  14. whome

    whome Member

    Arent there bigger things to worry about though? Its a freaking bike lane! What a waste of time..ugh
  15. BlackCat

    BlackCat Active Member

    So you think that just because you are on a bicycle and are not obeying posted signs you are not putting my life in jeopardy as well? Preciously my argument.
  16. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member

    we could bitch about cabbies .. I'm sure we ALL hate THEM ;)
  17. Dana McIntosh

    Dana McIntosh New Member

    I personally obey all traffic laws that apply to bicycles in DC. The behavior of other cyclists is not my windmill to tilt at, as it does not affect my personal safety. Feel free to petition DCPD to write cyclists tickets.. You will probably get as far as I did petitioning them to write UPS tickets.
  18. moreluck

    moreluck golden ticket member

    We don't have them!! Wouldn't be practical
  19. UPSGUY72

    UPSGUY72 Well-Known Member

    and I'm the pope....

    There way to many laws out for the police to enforce... Maybe they could start enforcing the cell phone ban. But than again they would have everyone pulled over probably in the bike lane...
  20. Shifting Contents

    Shifting Contents Most Help Needed

    I have no sympathy for bicyclists in my town. They run stop signs, weave in out of traffic, and yet to find a reason to yell at me when I am just trying to do my job. I agree with previous posts. Start acting like a vehicle in a traffic lane by following the laws or get on the sidewalk and off my back.

    I do however applaud your attitude and sense of humor here. However, this situation is never going to change. There is no UPS policy per say. Just a lot of vague safety guidelines one can only follow to the "T" when one's route is perfectly dispatched. We all know that never happens on days that end in "y."

    PS - I don't even drive in DC. I buy metro day pass. Worth every penny. You're nuts for even being on a bike.