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When driving along parked vehicles, how far away should you be from any parked vehicle?

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Practicing situational awareness is incredibly important when driving along roads where there are parked vehicles. This situational awareness is especially important when the roads are narrow and/or when there are vehicles parked on either side of the road that you are traveling down. While there is no specific distance you must maintain from a parked vehicle while driving, there are certainly good general driving practices that will help to ensure collisions don't happen.

When driving down a road with parked vehicles, it is important to maintain awareness of the status of the parked vehicle. The vehicle may be empty, or there may be a driver in the vehicle who is attempting to merge back into traffic. The driver and passengers also may be opening doors of the vehicle and stepping out of the vehicle. Being aware of these situations and maintaining a safe enough distance that people can safely exit vehicles on the street side of the vehicle is incredibly important.

On very narrow two-way roads with vehicles parked on either side of the street, one must also think about vehicles traveling in the opposite direction of your path of travel. Sometimes you or the other driver will need to pull over to allow for the space needed to safely drive by the parked vehicles along the narrow road.

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There is no law or rule that answers your question. Generally speaking, you have to stay far enough away from the cars so as not to hit them with your car. You also must stay on your side of the road, you can't cross the middle line of the road just because you are driving along parked cars. Safe driving practices would dictate that when you are driving in this situation you should slow your vehicle down to a safe speed. There is always the possibility of course that someone may open the door of one of the parked cars to exit. You should be prepared for this and be able to stop your vehicle quickly if the need arises.

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