Legislation aims to get rid of parallel parking on road tests


Two words that many drivers dread. 

“You know we always hear about parallel parking. I think there’s some kind of urban myth about it like ooo it’s crazy it’s hard,” Jason Redoutey, Owner of Mr. R’s Driving School said. 

Parallel parking has always been part of road tests for new drivers, but that could a thing of the past.

“A lot of people’s complaint is I don’t do this. The truth is you can live your entire life in Mid-Michigan and never have to parallel park,” Redoutey said. 

With more and more parking assistance tools, some think it’s an outdated skill. There’s legislation in Lansing right now that could eliminate the skill from road tests. Representative Sarah Lightner introduced the bill. She doesn’t think it’s fair to fail the entire driving test just because you can’t parallel park, but Jason Redoutey, better known as Mr. ‘R’, says that’s not possible. 

“That’s a common myth, so now you know it’s a myth. You cannot fail just because of parallel parking. You can fail because of the parking, is probably what they should have said or meant to say but you cannot fail just because of parallel parking,” Redoutey said. 

He’s been teaching students to drive for twenty years and says and although most people don’t have to parallel park that often, he thinks there’s more to it.

“I think it’s a nice skill to have. I think the bigger question is do you have basic control of the vehicle,” Redoutey said.  

Thus, the name of the test. 

“You know the name of the parking lot part of the test is the basic control skills test,” Redoutey said. 

Several states around the country have already eliminated this portion of the road test, but a few people we spoke to say it’s still a handy skill to have. 

Timothy Allswede doesn’t parallel park often but thinks it’s still necessary to learn. 

“I think unless parallel parking spots are eliminated, it’s gonna be a thing that people do so I think people are gonna have to know how to do it,” Allswede said. 

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