Police Department Frequently Asked Questions

How do I report an abandoned vehicle, and will it be removed from my street?

The California Vehicle Code states a vehicle is abandoned if it moves less than 1/10th of mile in a 72 hour period. If an officer determines a vehicle is abandoned, the vehicle will be towed. The Burlingame Police Department checks and tows abandoned vehicles Monday through Friday with the exceptions of holidays. On the first check, the officer will note the condition of the vehicle. 

In most cases, the second check takes place on the fourth day, or following Monday through Friday, after the first check. If it is determined that vehicle moved less than 1/10th of a mile the vehicle will be towed.

To report an abandoned vehicle, you can call our business line at 650-777-4100. The vehicle, in most cases, will be checked the next business day. You need to be prepared to provide the following information:

1. Your name, address, and phone number 
2. The location/address of the abandoned vehicle 
3. The make, model, color, and license plate of the abandoned vehicle

How can I get a copy of my police report?

If you filed your police report with the Burlingame Police Department, you can contact the Records Department Monday-Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm (except holidays), at 650-777-4100 or come to the station located at 1111 Trousdale Drive, Burlingame, CA 94010.

You are required to bring a photo identification, complete a request for the report, and pay a fee: For current fees, refer to the Burlingame Master Fee Schedule.  We accept cash, checks drawn from a local bank, and Visa or Mastercard credit cards.

If you filed your police report with any other agency, you will need to contact that agency to request a copy of that report.

Can a friend or relative park their car at my home while they go on vacation?
The answer is yes, but you need to be aware of abandoned vehicle laws.  Please see the FAQ in regards to abandoned vehicles.

Due to being close to the San Francisco Airport, this can be a sensitive topic. Often times, your neighbors may be bothered by your friends and relatives storing a vehicle in front of your home while they fly out of town. The best way to handle this, is to either use the car to avoid it being defined as an abandoned vehicle, or store it in your driveway or garage.

My car has been towed by the Burlingame Police, how do I get it back?

Your vehicle will need to be validly registered and free of parking tickets. If you have registration issues, you will need to go to the DMV to register your vehicle. If you have parking tickets listed in the DMV's data base, which we have access to, you will need to clear your parking tickets through the DMV.

Once these two issues are cleared, you will need to come to the Burlingame Police Department, 1111 Trousdale Drive, Burlingame, CA 94010 with your valid identification to receive a vehicle release form. For current fees, refer to the Burlingame Master Fee Schedule. Once you receive the release, you will be directed to the tow yard storing your vehicle. Since the Burlingame Police contracts with towing agencies, you will need to pay towing and storage fees to the respective towing agency. Tow fees are approved by the Burlingame City Council, and are subject to change.

Is the Records Department open on weekends?
The Records Department is not open on weekends. Normal business hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays.  Some limited tasks can be accomplished by the Communications Center after hours, such as Vehicle Releases, acceptance of Protection Orders and Counter Accident Reports.  Getting a copy of a Police Report and making a Live Scan Fingerprint Appointment must be made during normal business hours.
How do I get a restraining order?
You need to contact the Family Law Division of the Southern Branch of the San Mateo County Court located at 400 County Center, 1st Floor, Room A, Redwood City, CA 94063 or call 650-363-4711.
My teen just received a driver's license. Are there any restrictions I need to know about?
California Vehicle Code section 12814.6 sets the following restrictions. (This information can also be found in the California Driver’s handbook, available at the local DMV office, or on line at: https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/driver-handbooks/

"During the first 12 months after you are licensed, you can not drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. and you can not transport passengers under age 20 unless you are accompanied by your licensed parent or guardian, a licensed driver 25 years of age or older or a licensed or certified driving instructor."

"The law allows the following exceptions when reasonable transportation is not available, and it is necessary for you to drive. A signed note must be kept in your possession for any of the following exceptions explaining the necessity to drive and the date when the driving necessity will end (except emancipated minors):

  • Medical necessity to drive when reasonable transportation alternatives are inadequate. The note must be signed by a physician with the diagnosis and probable date of recovery.
  • Schooling or school-authorized activity. The note must be signed by your school principal, dean, or designee.
  • Employment necessity and the need to operate a vehicle as part of your employment. The note must be signed by your employer verifying employment.
  • Your necessity to drive an immediate family member with both a physician’s note and a note signed by your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) stating the reason and probable end date of necessity.
What hours can someone operate leaf blowers?
There is a City of Burlingame Municipal Code that regulates noise. For information regarding the permitted times of operation for various types of equipment view the code »click here for more information
Can I pay my parking ticket on-line?
The Burlingame Police Department contracts with an outside vendor to process its parking tickets. Tickets can be paid on-line by going to the following link: www.pticket.com/burlingame. This link is for Burlingame parking tickets only. There is a $3.95 fee for this service.
  You can also check the above website to see if there are any Burlingame parking tickets which have been issued to your vehicle.
  Keep in mind, the police department uploads parking ticket data to an outside vendor. This is usually done within 24 hours of your receiving a parking ticket. On rare occasions, it may take as many as 7 business days to record your parking ticket.
What do I do if I find a pay-by-space machine is not working, or I am just having difficulty using it?
Should you find a malfunctioning pay-by-space machine, or you are just having difficulty using one of our pay-by-space machines, you can contact one of our meter repair technicians directly. If the technician cannot help you over the phone, they will respond to the location of the pay-by-space machine you are attempting to use ASAP. The technicians carry a cell phone with them Monday through Friday. On weekends, you will need to call our business line. The pay-by-space cell phone is: 650-766-9610
Can I pay my parking ticket at the Police Department?
No, parking tickets must be paid by mail or online. Click here for more details.
How do I get a Stop Sign?
Burlingame residents may request the City to look into installing stop signs by writing a letter to the Public Works-Engineering Department at: 


City of Burlingame 
Department of Public Works – Traffic Engineer 
501 Primrose Road 
Burlingame, CA 94010

What are Stop Signs really used for?
Stop signs are traffic control devices that are used to regulate traffic flow at heavily traveled intersections. They are tools used by Traffic Engineers to help clear up confusion over right-of-way assignment at intersections. Contrary to common belief, the purpose of stop signs is NOT to reduce speed. According to State and Federal traffic control device regulations, “STOP signs should not be used for speed control.” Speeding vehicles are addressed through speed enforcement and traffic calming measures.
I lost my parking ticket, how can I pay it?
If you know how much the fine is, you may send a check made out to "The City of Burlingame" to Office of Parking Violations, P.O. Box 9003, Redwood City, CA 94065-9003. Be sure to put the citation number on the check. If you do not know how much the fine is, or your citation number, you can call our business number and give us the license plate number of the car on which you received the ticket.  We will find out the information for you. You may also contact the Office of Parking Violations directly at 1-800-352-7567. A warning notice will also be sent to the registered owner prior to the due date.
What do I do if the meter is not working where I park my car?
Anytime a parking meter is not working, you may report the malfunction to our meter malfunction hotline at 650-777-4196. You will need to provide a description of the problem as well as the street or parking lot and the meter number where the meter is located. We will have it checked. If you receive a ticket and it is found that the meter is not working properly, we will request that the citation be voided.
When can I file a police report?
If you are reporting a crime that occurred in the City of Burlingame, you can do so 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you are reporting a crime that occurred in a location outside of the City of Burlingame, you will need to contact that location's law enforcement agency.

If you live in Burlingame, you can call the Burlingame Police Department at 650-777-4100 and request an officer be dispatched to your residence.  Please remember to dial 911 if it is an emergency. You can also come to the Burlingame Police Station in person to file a police report. The physical address is: 1111 Trousdale Drive, Burlingame, CA 94010.

If you live outside the City of Burlingame but wish to report a crime that occurred in the City of Burlingame, you must respond in person to the Burlingame Police Station to file a police report.

Can my fifteen year old ride a motorized scooter without a helmet?
There are several Vehicle Codes regulating the operation of motorized scooters which can be referenced in the Vehicle Code Book for the State of California.
Does the Police Department take credit cards?
The Police Department takes Visa and MasterCard credit cards only. ATM or debit cards with the Visa or MasterCard logo will also be accepted with a signature required.  However, no "cash back" will be provided when debit cards are used.
What days are meters not enforced in Burlingame?
Meters are not enforced on Sundays and holidays.  Holidays are defined in the Burlingame Municipal Code, section 13.04.100, as follows:
  • 1st day of January (New Years Day)
  • 3rd Monday of January (Martin Luther King Jr. Day)
  • 3rd Monday of February (President's Day)
  • Last Monday of May (Memorial Day)
  • 4th day of July (The 4th of July)
  • 1st Monday of September (Labor Day)
  • 2nd Monday of October (Columbus Day)
  • 11th day of November (Veterans Day)
  • 4th Thursday of November (Thanksgiving Day)
  • 25th day of December (Christmas Day) 

If New Years Day, the 4th of July, Veterans Day, or Christmas Day fall on a Sunday, then meters will not be enforced on the following Monday.  If they fall on a Saturday, meters will not be enforced on the preceding Friday or the actual holiday.
Do I need a bicycle license to ride my bike in Burlingame?
You are required to have a bicycle license, per City Ordinance 13.52.010, to ride a bicycle on any streets, alleys, or public highways of the city.

You will get your bicycle license by coming to the Burlingame Police Department and completing an application (there is no cost and you get the license as soon as you turn in the completed application).  You will need to know the type of bicycle, the make, the model, the speed, the year, the color or colors, and any other distinguishing marks for this application.

I'm having a problem with my neighbor, what do I do?
You may find you are having a problem with a neighbor. Often times this matter may not be of a police or code enforcement issue. You may be referred to a service provided by the Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center (PCRC). You may also refer yourself to this service without city involvement. PCRC has had excellent results when both neighbors are willing to work together for a mutually acceptable solution to their problem.

PCRC seeks to solve problems through cooperative mediation. The staff of PCRC are facilitators and communication trainers. Through its mediation programs, PCRC staff and volunteers help clients identify problems, clarify perspectives and concerns, develop viable options, and reach durable and mutually satisfactory agreements.  PCRC services empower people, build relationships, and reduce violence.

Additional information involving PCRC can be located at http://www.pcrcweb.org/.  You may contact them at info@pcrcweb.org or by calling 650-513-0330.