Can you park near a stop sign?

8 minute read Published on May 19, 2024 by BrokerLink Communications

Can you park near a stop sign?

Ever wondered how close you can park to a stop sign without getting a ticket? Sometimes, finding a parking space can be challenging in busy neighbourhoods, and unless there’s a sign that says not to park there, you may be unsure of whether you can squeeze into that spot along the curb near the stop sign. If you’ve ever been in this familiar street parking situation, don’t fret. This blog explores the rules and tips to help you park legally and avoid fines.

How close can you park to a stop sign?

Here in Canada, how far you can park from a stop sign can change depending on where you live. Generally, parking nine metres away from a stop or yield sign is a good rule to follow, but always look out for signs or road markings that tell you the specific rules for that spot. There could be different rules for certain situations, like construction areas or for residents with a parking permit. It’s best to check the local parking rules to be sure.

As parking rules around stop signs can vary by province, we’ve listed them below:

  • In Alberta, Quebec, Nunavut, Yukon, and the Northwest Territories, you cannot park less than five metres from a stop sign.
  • In British Columbia, you must be parked six metres from a stop sign.
  • In Ontario, New Brunswick, and Manitoba, you must not park closer than nine metres to a stop sign.
  • In Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador, you cannot park within 10 metres.
  • In Prince Edward Island, you must park 12 metres away from a stop sign.

Why can’t you park close to stop signs?

When you park too close to a stop sign, it’s more than just hiding the sign itself. This creates a blind spot for drivers and pedestrians, making it tough for them to spot oncoming traffic or even the stop sign, leading to potential dangers.

It’s also about keeping sidewalks and crossings clear so pedestrians can cross safely. By ensuring the area near stop signs is clear, everyone on the road, including drivers, cyclists, and walkers, can better see each other and make safe decisions. This simple rule helps prevent accidents and keeps traffic flowing smoothly.

Moreover, if a car is parked in front of a stop sign and being there leads to an accident, the vehicle’s owner may be liable for the damage.

What are the general rules around stop signs?

In Canada, when you see a stop sign, you need to come to a full stop to make sure it’s safe before you go. The general rule is if there is a line on the road to tell you where to stop, stop there. If there’s no line, then stop before the crosswalk. And if there’s no crosswalk, stop at the sidewalk's edge. If there is no sidewalk, stop at the edge of the intersection without blocking where people walk. Failing to stop properly, like performing a rolling stop where the vehicle slows down but does not come to a complete stop, can result in penalties.

What are the penalties for parking near a stop sign?

Because parking doesn’t impact your driving record, you won’t receive demerit points for a parking violation. However, you can expect to pay a fine and discover your vehicle is no longer where you parked it.

The fines for parking too close to a stop sign can change based on the local rules regarding where it happened. Here are some examples:

In Ontario, if you park too close to a stop sign in a way that blocks traffic, the parking fine can be between $20 and $100. Your vehicle can also be towed, and you’ll have to pay for any costs related to moving and keeping your car until you pick it up.

In Alberta, specifically Calgary, in addition to possibly being towed, you’re looking at a parking ticket between $40 and $75, depending on how soon you pay your ticket.

In British Columbia, you may be looking at around $50, but it varies between municipalities.

No parking, standing, or stopping signs

When you see different signs at a stop sign or on the road, they often tell you something about whether you can stop, wait, or leave your car there. Here’s what they mean:

No parking signs

Parking is when you stop your car and walk away from it. These signs mean you can stop your car for a little while if you’re quickly helping someone get in or out or if you’re loading or unloading something. But you can’t leave your car alone; you need to stay with it or come back fast. This rule helps keep the road clear for other cars and people.

No standing signs

Standing is when your car is not moving, but you or someone else who can drive it are still close by. These signs are more strict. Generally, you can only stop to let people in or out of your car, and you can’t wait around for someone to come. You’re not allowed to load or unload stuff, either. So, drop off or pick up people quickly, then move on.

No stopping signs

Stopping means you’ve brought your car to a complete halt. No-stopping signs are the strictest signs. They mean you shouldn’t stop your car at all, except if there’s an emergency, a traffic signal, or a police officer directs you to stop. This is usually in places where stopping your car could block traffic or be dangerous. It’s all about keeping the road safe and smooth for everyone.

General parking guidelines

Traffic rules regarding parking can vary greatly depending on your location and the specific street you’re on, so it’s essential to always look out for and follow any posted signs about parking restrictions. However, sometimes, you won’t find these rules on signs, so it’s important to know the basics.

Here are some basic parking tips:

  • Never park on the part of the road where cars are meant to drive. If you need to stop, pull over onto the shoulder, try to find a parking lot or turn down a side street.
  • Avoid parking on curves, hills, or in places where you can’t see at least 125 metres up and down the road about the length of a soccer field.
  • Keep a three-metre distance from a fire hydrant about the length of a car.
  • Don’t park within 100 metres of a bridge.
  • Don’t park within six metres of entrances to buildings like hotels or theatres when they’re open.
  • Don’t park within nine metres of an intersection or 15 metres of a traffic control signal or traffic lights.
  • Don’t park within six metres of a fire station driveway, and avoid parking within 20 metres if you’re parked on the opposite side of the road.
  • Stay at least 15 metres away from a railroad crossing.
  • Don’t park where you might affect the flow of traffic around you or where snow plows may need to clear snow.
  • Make sure you’re not blocking another car, sidewalks, crosswalks, pedestrian paths, or an entrance to a road.
  • Before you open your car door, check to make sure it’s safe and you won’t hit anything or anyone, like a cyclist or pedestrian, or interfere with traffic.

Remember, while these are general guidelines, every province and even some municipalities vary in their traffic rules for parking. To ensure you’re following your provincial and local parking laws, you can refer to the provincial driver’s handbook and local laws and regulations.

How to avoid common parking offences

If you’re looking to avoid a parking ticket, here are some common parking offences to avoid:

  • Avoid double-parking or using an accessible parking spot without a clearly displayed placard or licence plate
  • Don’t leave your car in one place too long without approval
  • Don’t forget to pay the metre in metered parking
  • Move out of the way for emergency service vehicles when their lights and/or sirens are on
  • Don’t block sidewalk crossing, intersections, or fire hydrants
  • Don’t pass a school bus when it’s lights are flashing
  • Don’t park where you’re not supposed to, such as a no-parking or no-stopping zone, a permit-only zone, or on private property
  • Don’t park too close to a curb break, garage, or driveway
  • Don’t block access to bus stops, except in cases where a traffic control device or bus zone sign indicates otherwise

Can parking tickets affect my car insurance?

In Canada, receiving parking tickets doesn’t affect how much you pay for car insurance. Your insurance cost is based on things like how safely you drive, what kind of car you have, where you live, what type of auto insurance, and whether you’ve made insurance claims before. Parking tickets are not traffic violations, as they are about where you park, not how you drive, so they don’t show you’re a riskier driver.

However, you should pay your parking tickets on time. If you don’t, the fine can get higher, and if you ignore them for too long, the city might ask a collection agency to get the money from you. This could hurt your credit score. In provinces where insurance companies can use your credit score to help decide your insurance rate, having a lower credit score could indirectly make your insurance more expensive.

Furthermore, if you have a lot of unpaid tickets, you might not be able to renew your car’s registration. Again, while this doesn’t directly affect your car insurance rates, it can cause legal and financial problems.


Being able to park near a stop sign without getting fined all comes down to knowing and following the local parking rules and any signs you see. Laws can change depending on where you are, but the main goal is always to keep the road safe and clear for everyone.

Make sure you always check for any signs that tell you about parking rules near stop signs. By staying aware and careful, you can keep from getting parking tickets and help make the roads safer for everyone. Whenever you are uncertain whether there’s enough room for you to squeeze into that parking spot before the stop sign, it’s better to park a bit further away to avoid trouble and a possible parking ticket.

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How far is 30 feet from a stop sign?

Thirty feet, or about nine metres, is about the length of two cars parked end to end.

How far away from a stop sign can I park in Manitoba?

In Manitoba, you need to park at least nine metres away from a stop sign.

How close can you park next to a stop sign?

You should not park closer than the legal limit set by your local municipality or province, which ranges between five and 12 metres in Canada, depending on where you live.

How far can you park from a stop sign in Nova Scotia?

In Nova Scotia, you need to park at least 10 metres away from any stop sign.

If you have any questions, contact one of our local branches.