Categories: News

Parking near a fire hydrant: what are the risks?

Text of law, fines, dispute: what do you incur by parking in direct proximity to a fire hydrant in France? This practice is severely punished, because it complicates the task of firefighters in the event of an urgent intervention…

Parking near fire hydrants is strictly prohibited in France…

What does the law say about this?

This is a measure put in place to guarantee public safety and facilitate the rapid intervention of fire services in the event of an emergency. French regulations, and in particular the Highway Code, contain specific provisions on this practice: according to article R417-11 of the Highway Code, parking near a fire hydrant is considered very annoying and therefore prohibited. « Stopping or parking near fire hydrants is considered very inconvenient for public traffic. ». The law does not specify a minimum distance but in theory and depending on the situation, this must be at least greater than three meters. This minimum distance guarantees easy and immediate access to fire hydrants, to allow firefighters to quickly connect their pipes and react effectively to a fire. The reason behind this rule is to prevent any potential obstacle to their action, to ensure a rapid and effective response. And, as you will see, for offenders caught in the act, the sentence provided for by French law is particularly severe…

What do you risk?

In the event of violation of this rule, the offender is exposed to legal sanctions. Still according to article R417-11 of the Highway Code, “ Any stopping or parking that is very disruptive to public traffic provided for by this article is punished with the fine provided for fourth class contraventions. “. Fourth class, either 135€ ! The law also provides that the offending vehicle may be towed at the owner’s expense. « When the driver or the holder of the registration certificate is absent or refuses, despite the injunction of the agents, to stop parking which is very disruptive to public traffic, immobilization and impoundment may be prescribed.” Repression against this type of offense does not come out of nowhere. In the event of a fire, every minute counts, and any delay due to difficult access to a fire hydrant can have serious consequences. Fire hydrants are essential for guaranteeing sufficient water supply for firefighters, and failure to respect the minimum parking distance compromises this crucial access. But is it possible to challenge the fine?

Our PV expert at Auto Plus, Pascale Gétin, explained in a previous issue: “ This type of verbalization is often questionable. Either because the reason for this very inconvenient parking is not specified on the report, or because the location of the offense is absent, imprecise or incorrect. If this is the case, of course, contest, because €135 is at stake! »

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