How to Deal With a Hidden Parking Sign

Clayton street near 17th
A No Parking sign at Clayton and AshburyA No Parking Sign on Clayton hidden behind a tree

Apparently the DPT can’t keep up with citation protests.

First, the background. Back in April I parked on Clayton near 17th just underneath a “No Parking 1st Tuesday of the Month” sign (“A” in the picture at right). It was a Wednesday, and there was a ticket on my windshield citing lack of display of a permit placard. From either direction, that No Parking sign was the only visible regulation.

I scratched my head and walked down the street a bit. Down the way, at Ashbury and Clayton (“C”) I could see another “No Parking 1st Tuesday” sign. Then I looked up in the tree next to me (“B”) and there was the mystery permit parking sign. I thought that was a pretty dumb place to put a permit parking sign, behind a tree and between two other signs with no permit notice.

Sure enough, Article 3, Section 40 of the SF Traffic Code says that signs have to be in position and legible to an “ordinarily observant person.” Confident of the success of my protest, I dropped a polite letter in the mail, and waited.

May came around and I got an apologetic letter from the DPT, begging my pardon for not being able to act upon my citation yet.

Just the other day (August now) I received another identical letter. We’re so sorry we haven’t been able to do anything yet.


  • Protest that citation! Who knows how long it will take.
  • If you’re ordinarily observant, and you didn’t see the sign, it seems that you can get out of a ticket.

I can’t believe I’m griping about not getting fined fast enough.

1 Comment so far

  1. Victoria E (unregistered) on August 23rd, 2006 @ 10:49 am

    Yet another metro law that only makes a fraction of sense.

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