Reminder issued on parking, plowing laws

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RUMFORD – Now that winter’s here, Rumford’s parking ban is being enforced by police, but there’s a catch.

According to town law, vehicles left out on streets between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. during a snowstorm may be towed if they are interfering with snow removal. But state law, which supersedes town rules, gives highway departments the right to have cars towed even if it isn’t storming, Sgt. David Bean said Friday.

“That’s where people are getting confused,” Bean said. “If it’s not storming, they think they can leave their cars out on the street. We don’t have vehicles towed during the day, but hours make no difference. If the highway department says it’s in the way, it has to be towed.”

Another instance where state law supersedes town law involves people who plow snow out of their driveways and leave it in a public way or on sidewalks.

“It’s OK to plow it across a road or sidewalk as long as you clean it up afterward,” Bean said.

Having already responded to complaints regarding this, he said police are going to start ticketing homeowners or plow truck drivers who violate the law.

“We’ve been trying to be nice and only giving warnings out until now,” the sergeant added.

Owners of towed cars must pay a $25 parking ticket and the towing company charge.

Additionally, because Rumford has a snowplowing ordinance, people plowing driveways must first get a plowing permit.

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