LOCALS need to practise patience when parking or waiting for someone to park, according to a local driving instructor.
According to the road rules, those reversing into parks at a 45-degree angle must give way to the traffic behind them and wait for the road to clear before parking - but it's not always that simple.
Due to the narrow roads in Bathurst, following traffic cannot always manoeuvre around parking cars safely and this is the main cause for traffic congestion, according to local driving instructor Brook Lynch.
The ex-highway patrol officer commented on the matter following a letter to the editor advocating a change to nose-in parking in Bathurst which has sparked a debate on the Western Advocate letters page and Facebook page about which is the superior parking method.
The letter said nose-in parking would prevent drivers blocking streets and create better traffic flow, but Mr Lynch didn't entirely agree.
"Most of the towns that have front-in parking, particularly in the country areas, have much wider streets," he said.
"Our main streets ... are quite narrow and a lot of people have trouble reversing in, let alone backing out without seeing the traffic."
While there are positives and negatives for both sides of the parking debate, Mr Lynch believes the benefits of nose-in parking are outweighed by the dangers that come with it, considering Bathurst's narrow roads.
"There are advantages to it - it's easier to park, it's a lot quicker to park; you just drive in - but the disadvantage is reversing out [which] I think is far more dangerous to both vehicles," he said.
"As we see here in Bathurst, people struggle enough reverse 45-degree parking ... so could you imagine reversing blindly into oncoming traffic when you've got a big four-wheel drive next to you and you can't see what's coming. It would just be more trouble than it's worth."
While Mr Lynch agrees that people reverse parking cause some congestion, he noted there are other factors.
It is a combination of the people parking, the width of Bathurst's roads and the gardens and other features that have been constructed in the middle of the streets, he said.
"People should pull to the left and wait with their left blinker on and wait for the cars to travel past and for the road to be free and clear to reverse back, so there shouldn't be any traffic problems in that relation," Mr Lynch said.
"But two things happen with people in Bathurst: they don't move left enough and they block the middle of the road and reverse back, or the road just doesn't sustain enough width so ... others still can't get around."
Mr Lynch believes the danger of reversing out without sufficient room outweighs drivers having to "wait five seconds" for someone to reverse 45-degree park.
There are no plans to change the parking system in Bathurst.