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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Why towns pass laws prohibiting RV street parking

A week doesn't pass in the USA where a town somewhere doesn't pass a law prohibiting overnight RV parking on city streets. In many cases, RVs are not even permitted in driveways or in side yards of their owners' homes. The reason for the "no street parking" laws are illustrated in this video from Oakland, Calif., showing the RVs of homeless persons parked on city streets for weeks, even months at a time. The town has a law prohibiting stays of more than two hours, but apparently it's not always being enforced.


  1. This video has nothing to do with an RV in your side yard or in front of your house. This is a
    junkyard situation in California. I see no comparison with the fight
    to keep your own property at your own house.

  2. Unfortunately it will only be enforced against those of us who can pay the fines -- even tho my motorhome is parked in front of my own house only long enough to load it and unload it. In this town they are even trying to pass a law that you must have (pay for) a permit to load or unload in front of your own house.

  3. Although I get the point of the piece, how cana person with an RV be characterized as homeless?

  4. With the economy the way it has been, these people are the lucky ones. There are huge enclaves of homeless people living along the rivers, in parks, wherever they can find to lay down, and there are few, if any homeless shelters in the larger cities. Where there are any, they are filled beyond capacity.

    These "mobile" homeless are the lucky ones, and it is not an uncommon sight, anywhere in California.

  5. It all depends upon local issues and conditions. In the New Orleans area after Katrina, thousands lived in their RVs while their homes were being rebuilt or while battling insurance companies. We saw people still living in their RVs as short as three months ago. These were either parked on the street or in the driveway. Oh, we not talking about FEMA trailers here.

  6. These "homeless" RVers need a place to live. The RV is better than sleeping on the sidewalk. Cities need to set up parking lots for homeless RVers if they want to get them off the street. They have to go somewhere. Most cities, however, just want the problem of homelessness to move on out of their town.

  7. Are these streets ' PRIVATE " or PUBLIC ? Who gave the civil servants authroity to order the People, who " ARE " the Government, around ? Unless they can Prove these Full Timers are infringing on anothers RIGHTS or damaging property, then leave them alone !!!!!!!! The way the economy is going this is just the tip of the IceBerg !!!!!

  8. I'm sure there are some of us who feel secure enough, to feel smug, that we'll never be in this position. But with the economy the way it is, are you really sure? Your pension fund could go bankrupt overnight.

    Personally, I would prefer to camp somewhere out in the country where I might be able to keep some of my dignity. But most of the Federal lands have a "14 day limit", and more and more sites are getting closed down. So I'd have to have enough money fro gas to keep moving around.

  9. Yes, it is possible to argue about semantics; because they do have a "home" in the form of an RV. But they don't have a permanent fixed home, and are essentially living in a vehicle.

    Most of these RVs don't appear to be worth more than a couple thousand dollars at best. The next rung up on the RV "social ladder" are the people who have rigs that my be almost as old, but have some form of fixed home and just use them for camping. There are a lot of old RVs like these out there in people's back yards, etc. Some are still being used and their owners are still enjoying them; while others might be marginally usable but just gathering dust.

  10. from the comment above, I see a possible shading between an expensive RV and a cheap/old RV.
    Does an RV have to be expensive/new to be acceptable?

    We have an old one, which works for us, and we haven't seen a new one that works as well in terms of space (small outside) and floor plan. Why change just so something is new when it is not as useful.

    Snobbery here.

  11. You will only get a parking ticket in Oakland if it looks like they can collect it. I imagine collecting from these ?? faux full-timers would not be productive.
    Petty infractions are pretty much ignored since they have a constant shortage of police officers. Its about all they can do to investigate serious crimes. Take a look at the homicide map for this year in case you are thinking about joining these campers.

  12. Not intended to be snobbery.

    We used to own a class C that was 35 years old when we finally got rid of it. We took it more places than most people with rigs a quarter the age.

    However, I was trying to say that there is a "social ladder" in RVing. Everything and everyone isn't equal. Some of the people in the $100,000+ rigs won't even talk to us. Ironically, a lot of these people seem to be of pretty low breeding themselves, but got lucky on their Daddy's inheritance and bought a big new shiny Class A with it.

    I also was trying to say that even people with the $2000 rigs can still use them and get a lot of enjoyment out of them; and point out that there are still a lot of rigs like this out there, some are being still being used, and some not. (Some possibly get more enjoyment than the expensive ones.)

    Apparently I was taken wrong.


  13. Down in LA, I wish we even had a law like this in the first place. I live on a street with all apartment buildings, and limited parking, and several inconsiderate RV ownders insist on parking here day in and day out.

  14. We are slowly losing our RV parking rights!!!!

  15. RV owners fight county ordinance

    SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Ever have a problem with what your neighbors park in the driveway or on the street where you live?

    There are rules. Especially when it comes to parking recreational vehicles. There has been plenty of debate when it comes to where you can park an RV, even at your own home.

    "It's an accident waiting to happen," Kelly Newcomer said of having to park his RV in the street.

    Newcomer owns a 22 footRV, but you won't see it in his driveway.

    "You can park it in the road but can't park it in the driveway," Newcomer said.

    A year ago, he and other RV owners petitioned their neighborhood association to allow recreational vehciles to be parked in driveways. They won, but say one neighbor began calling the county to enforce an old county ordinance to keep them from parking on their own property.

    Newcomber calls it a safety hazard.

    "I am worried someone is going to run into it or get hit by a car trying to walk around it," he said.

    "The ordinance seems to be very restrictive," Robert Barr said.

    For Barr, he thinks the issue comes down to property rights.

    "You pay thousands of dollars in taxes but you can't park your car in your own driveway," he said.

    So, the group of RV owners from Henderson Golf Community took their beef to Chatham County commissioner Dean Kicklighter, who brought the issue up at county commission Friday morning.

    After hearing both sides, the commission decided the ordinance will stay as is.

    "I understand and sympathize with both sides. I truly do and I am not a fence straddler. I don't even like politicans who straddle the fence," Kicklighter told WTOC. "I guess that's what you put elected people in office for to make the hard decisions."

    "He's one guy I won't be voting for come election time either," Barr said.

    For the neighbors, they are disappointed, but won't be giving up so easy.

    "I don't want anyone to get hurt and I don't want my RV damaged," Newcomer said.

    RV owners in Henderson Golf Community can park RV's on the road for up to 24 hours, but have been cited and warned in past years for parking in their driveways. A fine can cost as much as $100. Most of them, retired military, now store their RV's at Hunter Army Airfield.


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