DON’T PARK THERE!
City Committee Reminds Public Not to Park
in Striped Access Parking Spaces
RAPID CITY, SD—The annual Sturgis motorcycle rally is just a little over two weeks away from its official start and the Rapid City Disability Awareness and Accessibility Committee is reminding motorcyclists and all drivers to refrain from parking in white or yellow-striped areas next to accessible parking spaces reserved for people with disabilities.
The white or yellow-striped areas adjacent to the accessible parking spaces provides important access for drivers and passengers in vans with wheelchair ramps and also for people in manual wheelchairs, using walkers and crutches. Van wheelchair ramps extend out of the side of the van, allowing a person in a wheelchair the space needed to exit and enter the van.
“The striped areas serve a very important and useful purpose and it is not for motorcycle parking,” said Patrick Czerny, chairman of the City’s Disability Awareness and Accessibility Committee. “Although the areas may look like a convenient option for parking a motorcycle, these areas are designed specifically for use by people needing accessibility options.”
For a second year in a row, the Committee is taking to social media ahead of the Sturgis rally to educate the public about the proper use of the striped parking areas. Drivers parking cars and motorcycles in white striped areas adjacent to public accessible spaces are subject to a $100 citation. Drivers are also reminded that parking downtown in areas marked with yellow curbs and striping are subject to a $25 citation. Many private businesses use yellow striping in their lots to designate accessible parking spaces for people with disabilities.
“It’s important for both residents and visitors to realize the importance of not only the striped areas but also access parking areas for people with disabilities,” said Czerny. “Throughout the year, we encounter issues with drivers parking in areas reserved for drivers with accessibility issues.
“The striped areas provide needed space for people to maneuver in manual wheelchairs, to get a walker out of a car, or to use crutches. The striped accessibility parking areas serve a very important purpose as do all disability reserved parking areas.”
Czerny says parking accessibility is a critical issue for people with disabilities.
“Unfortunately, many people don’t realize the importance of access parking for people with disabilities,” said Czerny. “They don’t realize a person can be a heartbeat away – or one step away - from possibly becoming disabled. A health issue can arise in an instant; you can break an ankle or a leg in a fall. Suddenly that reserved parking space or striped area takes on new meaning and importance for the person who needs it.”
For more information about disability issues and the work of the City’s Disability Awareness and Accessibility Committee, visit the committee’s Facebook page under the social media tab at www.rcgov.org or visit the committee’s page under Citizen Boards and Commissions on the City’s website.