Indiana town bucks the trend by voting down truck parking ban

Several truckers appeared at a council meeting to argue for their right to park in their own driveways -- and they won.

Semi Truck Driveway

While a growing number of cities are choosing to restrict truck parking in residential and commercial areas, an Indiana town recently voted against a proposed ordinance that would have prevented truckers from parking in their own driveways.

City officials in Richmond, Indiana, voted 8-1 against a proposal that would have banned residential truck parking during a Monday, October 7, meeting, the Richmond Palladium-Item reports.

The failed ordinance would have prevented the parking of any commercial vehicle longer than 12 feet in a residential driveway. Current city code in Richmond forbids residential street parking for semi trucks.

Several truck drivers, including local man Jeff Hargis, stood up to oppose the ordinance. Hargis told the council that “I’ve spoken with my neighbors. I’ve been parking my truck there for five years. Nobody has had any complaints.”

The ruling against the driveway parking ban comes as something of a surprise after the Richmond Advisory Plan Commission recommended that the ordinance should be passed during a September 26 meeting.

Richmond Common Council member Bruce Wissel asked for the ordinance to be written and was the only person who voted in favor on Monday. He had previously argued that truck drivers could park at local business like Walmart or truck stops. However, one individual at the meeting pointed out to council members that he had contacted the local Walmart and was told that they would tow his truck if he parked it in their lot overnight. That person also pointed out that forcing truckers out of their own driveways and into truck stops would mean fewer parking spaces for out of town truck drivers.

Another truck driver told the council members that he felt “harassed.” He addressed the council’s complaints about the noise caused by residential truck parking: “I have neighbors whose vehicles are louder than mine, I have neighbors whose vehicles look worse than mine. They have every right to park their vehicles in their driveway, so should I.”

Richmond’s ultimate trucker-friendly decision has not been the norm in recent months. Several cities and counties including Milton, Wisconsin, Joliet, Illinois, Ozark, Missouri, and Lee County, Florida, have all passed various forms of truck parking bans so far in 2019.

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