By Treena Shapiro
Advertiser Staff Writer
Q. A few months ago, a wheelchair access ramp was installed at an intersection by a park near my home. Frequently I see parked cars blocking the access. Common sense would tell you not to park there, but I have no idea how the law reads. The access area is not painted with a red stripe. Can you clarify this?
A. While the city's traffic code does not specifically address wheelchair access, the general parking regulations indicate cars should not be parked that close to an intersection or crosswalk, regardless of whether there is a wheelchair ramp there, according to the city Department of Transportation Services.
Section 15-14.1(a)(3) of the Honolulu's traffic code states that parking is prohibited within an intersection, along the edges or curbsides around corners and in channelized areas of any two intersecting streets; no signs are required. In addition, Section 15-14.1 (a)(6) of the traffic code says parking is prohibited within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection or within 20 feet upon approach to any midblock crosswalk; no signs are required.
The city paints curbs red only to identify bus stops and passenger loading zones.
Q. I live on Liolio Place in Makakilo. It is a cul-de-sac where there is a 25 mph speed limit sign posted, but cars continue to speed when they enter the cul-de-sac from Makakilo Drive.
I strongly suggest that they lower the speed limit to 15 mph and place a caution sign alerting drivers of pedestrians, especially the children living in the neighborhood.
A. Your concerns were forwarded to the city Transportation Services Director Cheryl Soon. She said a 25 mph speed limit for Liolio Place is consistent with the traffic code.
"Speed limits of 15 miles per hour are generally established only along narrow roadways with pavement widths of 18 feet or less," she wrote. "Your street is 28 feet wide."
Soon added, "The 25-miles-per-hour speed limit only indicates the upper roadway speed limit. The prudent driver, of course, is expected to reduce his or her speed appropriately should roadway conditions such as inclement weather, roadway curves, pedestrian/vehicular activity in the area, etc., dictate."
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