Driving Instructors Keep Blocking My Driveway to Practice Parking

I live in two ways a very quiet street where generally a lot of street parking spot available. My street could be one of the streets that RMS use for accessing the driving test. So, 10 to 15 L driving instructors let their student practise parking across my driveway every day. It has become a nuisance when 3-5 times per instructor blocking my access across my driveway. I have talked to several instructors to practise where there are empty spots, but they think they have right to park there and nothing wrong. Often, I bumped into them when I try to access my own driveway while they are practising parking. I also have talked to the council and local police but they both gave excuse that they can’t do anything unless they catch on the act. I know it is bull and lazy excuse, but I can’t get them to action. I am losing battle dealing with dense driving instructors who think 2 to 5 mins blocking is fine despite I am being annoyed when 50 times a day by multiple instructors constantly in and out.

Please suggest legal way what I can do and what are my options.

Edit: some may think I am exaggerating. here are some photos
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1psLCU4tvL1M0qa1GzoCu...

Within an hour two cars practise across my driveway and I drove out third one. 4 and 5 saw me talking so they kept going

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1rjmRR4TqCdJlrILwdkAUfWkuO-7...
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1cNFrSSuPJ0r9VJLFxpHXZJCfZE-...

Thanks to those who provided suggestions. I will try some of the methods to drive the pests away.**

Comments

  • +9

    suggest check with local council about you installing a camera on your property to get number plates etc for a limited period of maybe 14 days only.

    keep footage follow up with prints to substantiate claims.

    • +7

      As long as the camera is mounted inside your property and under a certain height if it's freestanding you don't need council approval for installing a camera to get plates. Just have to put up CCTV is in use warning signs apparently.

      • -2

        always good to keep council onside and informed, and a safe height would be better for security

        • +13

          True. Another way is to leave your car in front of, or behind the driveway, and use a dash cam to record their best efforts at parking.

          You can submit stills and written documentation of the plates to Council as there is no law against dash cams, per se, and most have the motion-activated recording to make it easier for you to do.

          If a particular school does to more than once a day, you may be able to claim they are blocking the driveway for an unreasonable amount of time and causing unnecessary stress (signs of visitors that do not visit, pets getting alarmed , etc.)

          Or put a sign on your car that they can see once parked, saying they are being recorded, and any traffic violations will be reported to the police. That alone should put an end to it.

      • which cam system recommend?

      • +1

        Under NSW road rules, a driver must not stop across a driveway for more than two minutes. $180 Fine.

        Put up a removable sign that says "24 Hour Driveway Surveillance In Use" and follow up with the above ?

        • Why would they care if there is driveway surveillance?
          As far as they are concerned they are not doing anything wrong.
          Surely they are moving in under 2 mins so won't care.

          Why not be more direct - go out and talk to them and ask them nicely to find somewhere else as the repetitive parking is bordering harassment outside your house. If there's going to be a sign, surely it should say something like "No Learner Driver Practice Parking Please"

          They should get the idea that you are irritated and hopefully the students question it enough they move on.

          If that fails, there's always option 2:

          ….Bikies

      • If the CCTV is mounted in a reasonable place of view where it doesn't impinge private areas (eg like over neighbouring back fence) you don't have to display anything. Usually signs are used for deterents

    • Just buy some bollards and just put them out, you'll need 4-6 of them.

      Liquid nail them to the road if you have to.

      Otherwise just put some larger rocks/boulders right on the curb, instructor won't risk hitting their bumper with the attempt at parallel parking/3 point turn

      • Can't put bollards up on public property definitely can't use glue that is vandalism

    • +24

      I thought blocking a driveway is not permitted. even in RMS (NSW) rule states that driver can stop to pickup and drop off passenger. clearly they are not picking up or dropping off any passengers.

      • +5

        It's not.
        Rule 198
        https://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/view/html/inforce/current...

        If you catch them, just clearly make it audible to the learner that they're being taught illegal road rules and hand them a piece of paper with the rules printed. Keep track of what driving school they are and put up google reviews that point specifically what they do when teaching parking.

        • +1

          I presume they are not leaving the vehicles unattended which was mentioned in rule 198. So not sure if this still applies.

          • +3

            @redforever: I assume you're referring to 198(2)(a). This only applies if all 3 parts of 198(2)(a) are met, the key part is the driver must be picking up or dropping off passengers. They can do that whilst blocking a driveway if they don't leave the vehicle unattended and complete it within 2 minutes.
            198(3) is defining what an unattended vehicle is.

            • +5

              @Trance N Dance:

              This only applies if all 3 parts of 198(2)(a) are met

              Correct. The big caveat here is the use of the word "and". Unless (i) AND (ii) AND (iii)…

              Instructor is not dropping off or picking up, so it doesn't even make it past the unless of (i)…

      • +5

        Oh I see. Maybe leave bad reviews to those driving instructors.

      • As far driver keep running engine and hand on wheel it's not kind of illegal because they can always move car when you coming out from your driveway. I know it's bad situation no one want help.

  • +3

    It might be more of a hassle, but get one of those flip up bollards and just place it on your driveway. If it's really bad, this will stop them from driving up your driveway.

    • +10

      Doesn't sound like they are actually driving on his driveway, just parking in front of it. Sounds annoying.

    • +3

      I don't think it's up the driveway, just across it, it's council managed land so not allot you can do about it.
      Having said that surely if the OP wants to get out then given that there's someone already in the car and it can be moved it's a non issue.

      Sounds like an amenity problem rather than a convenience problem.

      • +4

        Yes, not understanding the issue here.
        It sounds like a couple of times op has had to ask someone to move their car so they can enter/leave.

        I don't think that would even get me to "slightly bothered" on the scale of life hassles.

      • +6

        one or two is fine. not 20 - 30 a days.

        • +12

          Sure, but do you enter and leave your driveway 20 or 30 times a day?
          And why would an instructor tell a learner to park illegally?
          There is some miscommunication or exaggeration going in here.

          • +2

            @mskeggs: not the same person. this morning I drove out 5, i know some won't believe my pain. you can see for yourself that there are plenty of empty spaces where instructors refuse to use.
            https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1psLCU4tvL1M0qa1GzoCu...

            • +12

              @sbargainseeker: Is that your car parked on the street? They'll only practise reverse parking if it's behind a car, otherwise the parallel park is pointless

              • @spackbace: not my car. it's neighbour car. she parks within the boundry so it's ok.

                • +22

                  @sbargainseeker: Yes, but for every morning she's in that spot, they'll keep practising behind her.

                  Remove neighbour's car, and I bet they stop parking in that exact spot.

                • +5

                  @sbargainseeker: Talk to your neighbour and see if they can park elsewhere? Like spackblace mentioned, they're probably doing it because that's where there's a car to park behind.

                • +9

                  @sbargainseeker: Why doesn't your neighbour park a little closer to the driveway and you park on the other side of the driveway then there won't be any room to park a car in between?

                  How does your neighbour feel about it? I also wouldn't be happy if they were using my car to practice parking 20 times every day.

          • @mskeggs: I would be worried about the constant supply of terrible drivers practicing their hardest skills on my car.

            Move the car that they are using to practice on?

    • -1

      Will just one of those automatic flip up bollards be enough to flip the car though?

  • Show us what the area looks like please

    • +2

      here is the photo I just took an hour ago.

      https://drive.google.com/file/d/1giJyJCA5RbsjPMEHSKUFH1F9nlk...

      • +3

        Why are they parking across your driveway instead of in the HUGE space of curb there?

        • +5

          exactly my point. I have told a number of instructors to use the empty spaces. they insist.

          • -3

            @sbargainseeker: any case you can park your car outside if you are that bothered.

          • @sbargainseeker: Put a trailer on the left and right of your driveway. SOLVED. :)

          • @sbargainseeker: Is your neighbour's car rarely used, and thus a reliable point for doing the maneuver?

            Is it just driving instructors, or driving examiners too? I guess you can't tell.

        • They need a car to park behind or two cars to park between

          • @John Kimble: Who the heck does that? Why not use traffic cones in an empty carpark? Less liability and less traffic to worry about..

        • its convenient to do it in front of the driveway, that way if they dont judge it correctly it wont rip the tyres to shreds, also means they cant do it by feel.

  • +7

    So, hold on, the driving instructor is happy to be teaching their students to break the law? I could be wrong (often am), but last time I checked, you're not permitted to park across (or obstruct) a driveway, unless you're an emergency vehicle.

    • -8

      Technically under the law, even emergency vehicles aren't allowed to park across driveways, it's just no one is going to fine them for doing their jobs in an emergency.

      However buses specifically mentioned to be allowed to block driveways when picking up and/or dropping off passengers.

      • +8

        Read rule 305 and rule 306 of the Australian Road Rules. Police and Emergency Vehicles are exempt. Please don't spread misinformation.

        Rule 305 = Police

        Rule 306 = Emergency Vehicles as below:
        A provision of the Australian Road Rules does not apply to the driver of an emergency
        vehicle if—
        (a) in the circumstances—
        (i) the driver is taking reasonable care; and
        (ii) it is reasonable that the rule should not apply; and
        (b) if the vehicle is a motor vehicle that is moving—the vehicle is displaying a
        blue or red flashing light or sounding an alarm

        • -6

          That's not a blank exemption. And the exemption isn't because it's an emergency vehicle per se but rather the conditions the vehicle is in.
          306(a)(ii) it is reasonable that the rule should not apply

          I've seen two examples of an ambulance going out of their way to avoid blocking driveways, one example of avoiding double parking and one example of avoiding parking in the bus stop (to which other bystanders criticised them for not parking closer). All non-critical calls. Nor would I want a cop blocking something because they couldn't find parking to do an interview.

          I've also seen plenty of times where (mainly cops) don't follow the laws they should be enforcing either. But again, who's gonna fine an emergency vehicle.

          • +1

            @Trance N Dance: In your reply you said "emergency vehicles aren't allowed to park across driveways" & "doing their jobs in an emergency". The statement is factually incorrect.

            Rule 305 & Rule 306 provides an exemption… "doing their jobs in an emergency" as you put it seems like reasonable circumstances under the legislation… hence why I attached it. No one claimed a blanket exemption.

            Read some case law if you wish to understand what 305 or in particular 306(a)(ii) means.

    • +1

      Haha Love the negs! For what? Pointing out that the driving instructors are breaking the law, thus teaching their students to do the same?

      And thanks Trance N Dance - I think (as others have pointed out) that in some cases you can pick up and drop off, but I didn't know that emergency vehicles weren't even permitted to block a driveway. You learn something new every day! :)

  • +67

    Next time go up to them in your underwear brandishing a rake, ask them if this is the virgin they promised.

    like to see how many instructors will persist after that

    • That was soooo funny, well done!………and it may work!!

    • +1

      LOL - try finding the instructor's name as well to make it more awkward.

    • +2

      i suggest a garden hose and splashing the car with water to give the student the full effect

  • +41

    Put your council bin on the driveway where they would park?

    • +5

      great idea

      • I don't think bins are allowed to be out, officially, except for specified times.

    • +3

      Replace 1 amenity issue with another

      Simplez

  • +3

    Your only real option is to make it unappealing for them to use and get them to bother someone else, assuming they're only using the public part of your driveway. Council probably won't care, and the police will only be useful if you record them consistently using your personal driveway over a long period of time.

    So to make it unappealing, put up ugly orange cones or bollards right where your personal driveway starts. If that isn't enough, then put up a ton of religious (your choice) iconography right in front of your personal driveway where they'd be able to see it when driving into your driveway, or something equally mundane that will make someone uncomfortable while not being outright offensive.

    Regardless I'd say get a camera, will be good to have evidence if something happens.

    • +2

      Your only real option is to make it unappealing for them to use and get them to bother someone else

      I agree, order a truck load of horse shit and dump it out the front

      • +3

        Trying to help the OP, not stink him out of his own house!

        • Little bit of column A little bit from column B….
          Also helping his lawn.

          FWIW I think its a Karen complaint. If hes leaving home everytime a learner is there, he must be the unluckiest person on earth.

  • Op, why would an instructor make a learner park across your driveway?
    Do you mean turn into your driveway as part of a 3point turn?

    • +4

      not 3 point turn. practise reverse parking just across my driveway

    • +11

      probably because they don't want the learners hitting their car into the curb constantly

      • +2

        someone else mentioned park your car there. I wonder how many pro instructors even would leave a note if there is a tiny scrape/ding.

        This has actually happened to me before and they left me with >1k damage: 2 panels and my wheel scraped.

        I was extremely lucky someone saw it happen from their porch and took a pic and left me a note.
        It was an L plater practicing kerbside parking but unsure if with parents or a pro driver.

  • buy dashcam, sumbit video to youtube,

  • +34

    If you enjoy solving tech puzzles, see if you can set up a motion activated sprinkler on your land near the end of the driveway that you can turn off from the Alexa app or similar (for when you want to leave / return). I don't think the instructor would find it easy to talk to his student or the student to ask questions while the car is being pelted by water drops.

    • +3

      This is genius! let us know how this goes.

    • +1

      Pedestrians will love it, I'm sure.

    • +1

      I like this one - even if not motion activated just a long hose back to the house and turn it on every time you see them

    • I was thinking something similar, but instead the motion could activate a Bluetooth speaker and start blaring unbearable music - thinking really intense heavy metal. Imagine trying to parallel park to that!

  • +2

    Need more MSpaint of issue

  • +5

    ROAD RULES 2014 - REG 198
    Obstructing access to and from a footpath, driveway etc
    198 Obstructing access to and from a footpath, driveway etc
    (1) A driver must not stop on a road in a position that obstructs access by vehicles or pedestrians to or from a footpath ramp or a similar way of access to a footpath, or a bicycle path or passageway unless—
    (a) the driver is driving a public bus that is dropping off, or picking up, passengers, or
    (b) the driver stops in a parking bay and the driver is permitted to stop in the parking bay under these Rules
    *: Maximum penalty—20 penalty units.*
    Note :
    "Bicycle path" is defined in rule 239, and
    "footpath" ,
    "parking bay" and
    "public bus" are defined in the Dictionary.
    (2) A driver must not stop on or across a driveway or other way of access for vehicles travelling to or from adjacent land unless—
    (a) the driver—
    (i) is dropping off, or picking up, passengers, and
    (ii) does not leave the vehicle unattended, and
    (iii) completes the dropping off, or picking up, of the passengers, and drives on, as soon as possible and, in any case, within 2 minutes after stopping, or
    (b) the driver stops in a parking bay and the driver is permitted to stop in the parking bay under these Rules.

    Seems like they are in contravention of rule 2(iii) if they are spending 2-5min chatting about the parking effort, etc.

    • +3

      They're in contravention of rule 198(2)(a) because they're not dropping off or picking up any passengers.

      • OP shows someone outside the vehicle, is that the instructor inspecting the park or the OP?
        Devils advocate its the instructor that got out, gives them 2 minutes to leave.
        Worst case scenario they are in contravention of rule 2(iii), best case is they are in contravention of Reg 198 in total as they are ticking every box.

        • +1

          it was me trying to talk to the instructor to use empty space and I was about to getout. then he was aruging for another 5 mins. :D

          • @sbargainseeker: Could you do a snap send solved to your local council about them parking there? If police aren't interested I'm sure the council coffers would like their investment.

    • +1

      A driving instructor is not captured by that part (a) exception anyway, because they fall at the first hurdle - they are not dropping off or picking up passengers.

      • +1

        You mean 198-(1)(a)? He's not a bus.
        198-(2)(a) - no context.

        They are breaking the regulation at step 1 - (1) A driver must not stop on a road in a position that obstructs access by vehicles or pedestrians to or from a footpath ramp or a similar way of access to a footpath, or a bicycle path or passageway unless—

        (2)(a)(iii) just reinforces a time frame OP is complaining about.

        • (2)(a)(i) reinforces the rule… It fails at that hurdle before it even gets further into that piece of legislation.

          (i), (ii) and (iii) are mutually inclusive. They are not or but "and", meaning that that rule is broken as soon as (i) or any other part is broken.

          • @pegaxs: Interested in your understanding on this part of that particular rule:

            198 Obstructing access to and from a footpath, driveway etc
            (1) A driver must not stop on a road in a position that obstructs access by vehicles or pedestrians to or from a footpath ramp or a similar way of access to a footpath, or a bicycle path or passageway unless
            (a) the driver is driving a public bus that is dropping off, or picking up, passengers, or
            (b) the driver stops in a parking bay and the driver is permitted to stop in the parking bay under these Rules.

            Does this mean it's illegal to queue across an unmarked crossing at an intersection (where they have a footpath ramp down to the road, but no crossing markings/signs)? It's doesn't seem to be covered by 128A, and I'm not really conversant with the NSW rules.

            128A Entering blocked crossings
            (1) A driver must not enter a children’s crossing, marked foot crossing or pedestrian crossing if the driver cannot drive through the crossing because the crossing, or a road beyond the crossing, is blocked.

            • +1

              @Chandler: I will preface this by saying, I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advise advice…

              An unmarked crossing? I would need to see an example. It would depend on where the ramp down was located exactly and what the intersection looked like and if there are any markings or signs.

              If it is like my example, if you are stopped and waiting for traffic, yes, you can queue there, as it is not a designated pedestrian crossing, it has the ramps down to the road. The ramps are there for ease of access, not to make it a pedestrian crossing (Also, there are other rules here that say you cant "park" across it anyway. Namely RR170)

              And depends on what is defined as "stopped" in your question. Since rule (198) is contained in the "stopping and parking" section of the rules, I would say that it deals with pulling over and stopping, not the act of stopping at the intersection to give way.

              Road Rule 170 deals with stopping and parking near intersections. So if there is a ramp down to the road within 10m of the intersection, it shouldn't be parked in front of because of other reasons as well.

              Does this mean it's illegal to queue across an unmarked crossing

              A ramp down from a road related area to the road does not automatically make it a crossing. Crossings need to be marked out in some way and be sign posted to be a crossing. (See; Pedestrian crossing, Foot crossing, Children's crossing).

              RR 80 (6) deals with what a children's crossing must contain.
              RR 81 (3) deals with what a pedestrian crossing must contain.
              "Marked Foot Crossing" is defined in the RR dictionary.

              So, if you are pulling over and stopping and/or parking, no, you cannot block them. If you are stopping because you are waiting to enter an intersection and there are no markings to denote it as a crossing, that is fine. If there are markings to denote a crossing, no, you cant block them.

              Clear as custard.

              • +1

                @pegaxs: Thanks for that. Like I said, I'm not conversant with the NSW regulations; well, I wouldn't say I'm conversant with any of them TBH - I "know" the "road rules", but don't ask me to quote regulation. Which is why I think you should be given a short test when renewing your license: to ensure you are aware of any changes, and a refresher (maybe ask people to answer questions based on the "top 5/10/etc" broken rules?) But I digress…

                If it is like my example

                Your example is similar, but here's another example where its not quite at the intersection, but close enough that you could be queuing across the ramp.

                Since rule (198) is contained in the "stopping and parking" section of the rules

                Hadn't considered that aspect, but agree being in that section and the wording of the unless conditions leans it towards parking, not just stopping in traffic, although the rule itself only states "must not stop".

                A ramp down from a road related area to the road does not automatically make it a crossing. Crossings need to be marked out in some way and be sign posted to be a crossing. (See; Pedestrian crossing, Foot crossing, Children's crossing).

                Yeah I looked up those definitions in the dictionary. But since 198 was talking about "Footpath ramps" and not crossings (which is why I put 128A in there), that's why I thought I'd ask. Most if not all crossings would have footpath ramps, but not all footpath ramps are crossings.

                Again, thanks for your answer :)

                • +1

                  @Chandler:

                  here's another example

                  (Let's pretend that example is in NSW, but Qld rules are almost the same as NSW anyway.)

                  You could queue across that. It is not a "pedestrian crossing". The law you quoted before (198) is in regards to parking, not to driving. It comes under "Restrictions on stopping and parking." You could not "park" across it, or remain stopped across it (ie: to load or unload goods or passengers). Driving on the road and waiting in line to get to the intersection is not "stopping". Park and Stop are defined in the RR dictionary.

                  • stop, in Part 12 and for a driver, includes park
                  • park, in Part 12 and for a driver, includes stop and allow the driver’s vehicle to stay

                  the rule itself only states "must not stop".

                  Part 12 is the section on "parking and stopping". (defined above)

                  If you are driving and you are waiting/giving way, you are not "stopped", you are stationary, your intent is not to stop, but to continue on once conditions are clear for you to move on.

                  And yeah, "footpath ramps not to be blocked" would be due to people "parking" across them, hence the reason it is under the parking and not general rules.

                  Think of it this way; You cant get a ticket for being in a line of traffic, waiting at an intersection behind other cars next to a "No Stopping" zone, because you technically are not "stopping". Stopping has to have intent to stay (usually by leaving the vehicle or staying longer than required). Same would go for this example. Your intent, when in a line of traffic waiting your turn, is not to stay.

                  Another way to look at it is; How many times a day do you come to a stop in traffic and are directly out the front of someone's driveway, yet you don't get tickets for that?

                  I "know" the "road rules", but don't ask me to quote regulation.

                  That's why I am so much fun at parties… :D

  • +17

    Get the hose out and start hosing the car so they can't see out the windows to park.

    Also, give them bad reviews on google.

    • Yeah. This is the only way. Piss enough of them off, they will avoid your house. Or come back at night vandalise yours.

  • just buy a few traffic Cones, put them on the road and stick up a camera in use sign, so no one would take them.

  • +10

    Haha I can't believe you went out and took a picture standing in front of the car. You mad man!
    Ok I see your problem - they are using the car to the left of your driveway to reverse pack and they end up stopping in front of your driveway and then discussing it.

    I'd say your only solution here is to ask your neighbor to park forward some more so when they reverse they don't cover your driveway. I mean this isn't a big issue unless you want to get out, but then they'd see your gate opening and move. They aren't really doing anything wrong.

  • OP.

    (A) Do you actually mean, they parked their car infront of your driveway and there is no one in the car? i.e. parked and walked away.

    Or

    (B) They are practicing parking? and will drive away once they are done?

    If case (B), I don't think there is much you can do… As this would be similar IMO, like people using a driveway to "U turn".

  • +15

    Stand naked in your front yard.

    • Do the helicopter spin to assert dominance too!

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