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Illegal parking gets police attention

City officials are taking notice of a growing problem inBrookhaven with improper parking on city streets andright-of-ways.

“There’s a lot of improper parking in neighborhoods and indowntown that’s going to have to be corrected,” said BrookhavenPolice Chief Arlustra “Pap” Henderson.

Some of the main areas of concern include vehicles parked alongstreets that are not wide enough to accommodate both parkedvehicles and through traffic.

“A lot of times that’s why accidents happen,” saidHenderson.

He said the police department will work to correct the problemby first warning violators and then issuing improper parkingcitations, which carry a fine of $90.

“We try to warn a person on violations to give them a chance tomove the equipment or vehicle, but some people seem to takeadvantage of that and just move it back,” said Henderson.

City aldermen have also made mention of improper parkingproblems in downtown Brookhaven, said Henderson, who was notifiedrecently about the increasing number of people parking on the wrongside of the street.

Henderson said vehicles headed east must park on the east sideof the street with the vehicle pointed in that direction. Peopleare not allowed to pull across the street and park their vehicle inthe wrong direction, he explained.

“I’ve noticed people also have a tendency on a one-way street topark where they’re going in the wrong direction,” saidHenderson.

He added that one way streets should never have vehicles parkedon both sides because it makes the roadway too narrow.

Another dangerous situation that arises from improper parkinginvolves vehicles parked on sidewalks.

“The sidewalks were put there for a reason. It’s so people won’thave to walk on the street,” said Henderson. “What we have inBrookhaven more and more is people out walking, which is goodbecause they’re getting their exercise, but it’s not good when theyhave to get off the sidewalk and get in the street because someoneparked on the sidewalk.”

He cited how pedestrians in the street can result in dangeroussituations; thus sidewalks are in place to keep pedestrians out ofharm’s way.

Henderson believes the improper parking problem is aboveaverage, even though city fathers have created laws to make parkingsafe and convenient. Henderson plans to have his department enforcethe laws of Brookhaven.

“I think the citizens are going to have to obey the laws andpark in the particular areas where they’re supposed to park,” saidHenderson.