Stricter penalties for trucks parked illegally up for discussion in Orange County

West Orange County residents say trucks are parking in neighborhoods

By Nadeen Yanes - Reporter

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - Right before the busy intersection of Apopka-Vineland Road and Balboa Drive Monday were two trucks, including one semi, parked in a right turn lane into a business.

Employee Felicia Alexander said they had both been there for days. 

"The big trailers park here and the smaller ones park in the apartment complex," Alexander said while pointing to the giant truck in the turn lane. "They are here for days." 

Alexander said she never sees the drivers come or go, but that, for her own safety, she wants them gone for good. 

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"When we are trying to come out, it's very dangerous because we can't see the inside lanes if a car is coming," she said. "I've almost gotten hit once from this."

She didn't know who to complain to. However, the president of the Hiawassa Highlands Homeowners Association did, voicing her concerns to District 6 Orange County Commissioner Victoria Siplin.

Commissioner Siplin said she's heard similar complaints from residents also in Orlo Vista and Pine Hills neighborhoods. 

"The residents complained," Siplin said over the phone. "Some of the truck drivers live in the neighborhoods, but for some reason, they don't want to seek proper parking for their vehicles." 

According to Orange County Code of Ordinances, drivers are prohibited to: "Park or store a motor vehicle with dual rear wheels in any area of the unincorporated area of the county zoned for multiple-family dwellings and/or single-family dwellings, including streets and rights-of-way, except temporarily while actually engaged in loading or unloading persons or property."

Siplin said they are parking in shopping plazas and neighborhoods and that it's not only a nuisance, but for some neighborhoods, it's a safety-concern, especially as many of the trucks are parking overnight and on weekends. 

"If you have an emergency vehicle trying to come down a street and you have large vehicles parked in the right of way, that's a safety issue," Siplin added. 

Siplin hopes to discuss the issue at Tuesday's Orange County Board of Commissioners meeting. She said she believes the current fine of $30 is not a deterrent and is asking for staff members to present options to "strengthen our regulations, empower Code Enforcement Officers and OSCO staff and streamline communications when residents report." 

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