Parking at Union


Raylen Satterwhite, Reporter and Web Design

The Union parking lot is notorious for its littering and highlights the rough side of teenage adolescence. As a parking lot of new drivers, it’s bound to be chaotic, and there are several rules that Union puts in place to keep it in order. But, there are also a few aspects, such as car use and littering, that are self-determined by students that leave a sad reputation on the parking lots.
To begin, one of the Union bus drivers, Ms. Nancy, stated, “I think having a student parking lot is a good thing for students. But, maybe the students need to be held to stricter standards or rules about driving their vehicles to school and yielding to the right-of-way, not being crazy.” Not going beyond the speed limit, and being extra cautious in parking lots helps individuals avoid getting in an accident.
As a senior student driver, Robert has experienced it all. “I don’t think a single person enjoys the parking lot, it’s led to some teachers letting us out earlier so we can get there fast. Because the problem is when we are parking there are a bunch of parents driving in, and they park their cars in the lanes that we use to get out. So, they’re just literally parking their car in the way so I can’t get out at all. And they get mad when we students are trying to get out of the parking lot. Not to mention the fact that a lot of students here haven’t driven a lot at all. Especially, at the beginning of the year, I think for the first month straight, there was at least one collision of some sort every day, trying to get out or get in. Like watching two students back out and hit each other or a student trying to pull out and swipe the car next to them; every day.”
These issues are present and several other situations have gone unnoticed over the past years. An anonymous student shared their experience saying, “Last year in the intersection, there was a bus leaving, but they accidentally hit a smaller car and completely crushed the windshield and destroyed the car, everyone was okay and nobody got hurt. But, that’s probably why they now have crossing guards. They must be trying to make it better.” Many students are fresh out of driving school and lack many built-in habits which makes them more of a risk on the road. But many students are just trying their best to just be good drivers.
In another case, a newer anonymous driver pointed out that, “The parking lot gets pretty chaotic, it gets very dirty at times, but I feel like we’ve worked out our own system. It’s like a chaotic order, but we’ve figured it out. It’s difficult but better than having to park in the church parking lot.” Underclassmen, sophomores specifically, aren’t allowed to park at the school, which creates some tension. The church parking lot is a 5-minute walk away and can make sophomores feel inconvenienced. Students do park without passes at times, which leads to overcrowding in the parking lots and some cars can end up towed. There are people trying to support the parking lot dynamic.
However, it’s still notable that there are some reckless drivers, Ms. Nancy pointed out that, “I think kids are being a little bit reckless in the way they drive. Thinking they’re invincible, thinking that nothing is going to happen to them on the road.” But in fact, it is quite the opposite – as Robert had pointed out, accidents continue to happen.
A teacher, Mr. Wiitanen stated, “I do not think the rules are too strict, no I don’t. I think because we have a limited amount of space and we keep getting more and more students and cars, I think there needs to be some sort of regulation. People need to follow the rules, driving is a privilege, not a right.” Which highlights some major importance to students. Although there is a surplus of cars and a minimum of parking spaces, people should respect the rules that are already in place so everyone ends up in a happier place.
In addition, an anonymous driver voiced, “The traffic is really bad and it takes a solid 15 minutes every day to get out some days, and we live pretty close. But, it takes a while. It’s dirty, very dirty, and people are bad at parking I can’t park because they will park pretty close to the edge. I’m sure the school can’t do anything about that but it’s pretty annoying.”
So in general the parking lot is difficult and if individuals took the time to use a garbage can, the parking lot would be cleaner. In some eutopia, if students slowed their driving and checked their mirrors and blind spots maybe there would be fewer crashes. The importance of respecting the parking lot still remains to this day, and it’s an issue, safe driving to new and old drivers! GO, TITANS!