Manouvers: Parallel Parking

Parallel Parking

Pull up either alongside or slightly ahead of the car you wish to reverse around and stop the car, apply the handbrake. Ideally you want to be reasonably close to the parked vehicle and straight. You may need to signal to the left on stopping if a car was following you on approach.

Prepare the car, by selecting reverse gear and finding biting point. Then do good all round observations starting by looking over your right shoulder and finishing looking through the rear window, in particular looking into the area you are about to reverse into. Do not signal and if it is safe to proceed remove the handbrake.

To move the car, gently raise and lower the clutch pedal around the biting point (moving the pedal no more than the thickness of a pound coin at a time) and reverse back in a straight line until the back of your car is passed the parked car (so you are staggered with the parked car). At this point check over your right shoulder to see if any vehicles are passing and if it is safe to continue start steering to the left (as each car is different your instructor may have given you a system to follow to help you know how much steer is needed but generally a 45° is suggested).

Taking effective observations throughout the rest of the reversing manoeuvre continue to reverse into the space slowly whilst taking the steer from left lock to full right lock. The steering and the speed of the car need to be relational and keep an eye on your distance to the kerb to help judge when and how much to steer.

Once in the space and straight take the steering back to straight. Stop the car and apply the handbrake.

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