Vehicles and Parking


·     Inoperative Vehicles

·     Motor Bikes, Scooters, etc


·        To Report Abandoned Cars            703-323-4500 (Faifax County)

                                                                        703-385-7924 (Fairfax City)


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This page last updated 08/19/12

Vehicles and Parking.htm



Inoperative Vehicles


There have been a number of problems with inoperative cars and trailers left in some people’s lots.  This is a violation of the HFCA Rules and Regulations.  What you may not have known is that it is also a violation of the law.  HFCA will resort to reporting violators to the County if they do not comply.  In general, our policy is to request homeowners to comply before taking formal action.


Chapter 110 of the Fairfax County Code regulates the keeping of inoperative motor vehicles and trailers. The ordinance states:


It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to keep any inoperative motor vehicle, trailer, or semi trailer on any property zoned for residential, commercial, or agricultural purposes unless such vehicle is kept within a fully enclosed building or structure or is kept completely screened or shielded from view. This chapter defines “Inoperative Motor Vehicle” as: Any motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer which:


·        Is not capable of starting and moving under its own power; OR

·        Does not display valid license plates; OR

·        Does not display an inspection decal that is valid or displays an inspection decal that has been expired for more than sixty days.


The ordinance permits the Impoundment Officer of the Fairfax County Police Department to order the towing of inoperative vehicles from private property if the owner(s) does not remove them within ten days after receiving a violation notice from the Impoundment Officer. Property owners are subject to prosecution for violation of this ordinance.


To report an inoperative vehicle, email or call the Police Traffic Division Impound Section at 703-280-0587.  A voice mail message will provide you with all the information necessary to file a complaint.  Complainants’ names are never divulged; the release of names is protected even from a Freedom of Information Act request.


The Impoundment Officer will follow up complaints with inspections in the field and enforcement action as appropriate. The officer will conduct an on-site inspection to determine if a violation exists. If so, a warning letter is posted at the location with another warning mailed to the property owner explaining the County ordinance and asking for compliance. After an appropriate time for compliance, approximately 30 days, the officer will return to the violation location. If the violation still exists, a reminder warning is posted at the location. After a third inspection, if the violation still exists, a notice of violation will be served which compels the property owner and/or responsible party to reach compliance within ten calendar days.


Compliance is achieved by either:

  • Demonstrating that the vehicle is operative and properly licensed and inspected; OR
  • Placing the vehicle in a fully enclosed structure or completely shielding it from view by fencing; OR
  • Removing the vehicle from the property.


Failure to comply will result in the violator being charged with a Class 2 misdemeanor (up to six months in jail and up to $1000 fine), and the vehicle being towed at the violator’s expense. Usually a violation comes into compliance soon after the first notice of violation. Nevertheless, the ordinance does provide for an administrative appeal by the violator after the notice of violation is served. Enforcement is stayed pending a ruling by the hearing official in these cases. Hundreds of unsightly and violating vehicles are impounded by the Impoundment Section each year.   Pete Scala (1996)



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Parking on the Street


Fairfax County parking regulations prohibit blocking driveway entrances.  Do not park closer than 10 feet to either side of driveway entrances.  Do not park closer than 15 feet to a stop sign or fire hydrant.  Call the Fairfax County Police non-emergency number at 703-691-2131 to report parking violations.


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Parking on the Yard



A vehicle can be parked on the front yard for no more than 48 hours to allow residents to unload, work on the vehicle, and/or clean it.  If you would like to report a violation, please contact Fairfax County Zoning at 703-324-1300


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Parking Your Boat or Trailer


Article VII, Number 11 of the Hickory Farms Covenants states:


No boats, trailers, tents or any structure of a portable nature, or portable vehicle other than automobiles shall stay parked forward of any dwelling for a period exceeding seven days.


What does this mean?  The term "parked forward of' has the meaning of "forward of the front line of the house,” whether in the street, on the lawn or in the driveway.  The enumeration of examples is fairly clear, but is not necessarily all inclusive.  "Seven days" has the implied meaning that it is a one-time maximum.  If it meant such a vehicle, say a trailer or boat, could sit for six days, be moved for one day and then returned, it would defeat the purpose of the rule which is to avoid a storage lot appearance which detracts from the neighborhood and property values.  Applying common sense, we must construe “automobile” to include small pickups and small panel trucks, etc. which are used for daily transportation to and from work.  Excluded in the meaning would be large commercial vehicles, such as a stake body truck, school bus, recreation vehicle, etc.  In addition to detracting from appearance, these also create a safety hazard due their size.  (HF Newsletter April 1995)



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Motor Bikes, Scooters, etc.


It is illegal for underage kids to ride motorized vehicles on the street.  It is illegal to ride any motorized vehicle on a sidewalk.  And the neighborhood common areas are for pedestrians to enjoy (they will soon be posted so everyone will know).  If your children are motor bike riders, please find someplace safe for them to ride, and please make sure they wear safety gear. (HF Newsletter 1997)


From the July 12, 2004 Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Meeting:


".......Chairman Connolly stated that law enforcement today is facing the problem of the proliferation of small gas-powered mini-motorcycles known as “pocket bikes” and gas-powered scooters.  Motorized scooters resemble the push scooter of old except for the engine mounted over the back wheel.


"Existing codes prohibit children under 16 from operating these on public roads, but many parents are unaware of this law. There are children on County roadways operating these scooters in excess of 20 miles per hour.  He asserted that this is dangerous for not only the operator, but also for pedestrians and other drivers.


 "Chairman Connolly said that the Police Department is developing a brochure which will present a comprehensive review of existing legislation so that stores selling mopeds and scooters, parents, operators, and police officers will be aware of the laws that govern their use.


 "Unfortunately, the police must deal with a myriad of often confusing and overlapping codes.  He stated that the County needs legislation that is up-to-date, clear, consistent, and easily understood by buyers, dealers, and the police."



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