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California Traffic And Driving Laws

Two of the most popular causes of arrest in California are reckless driving and DUI. Therefore, it is no surprise that driving in CA is a privilege, and in order to obtain it, you must apply for a license and abide by the relevant traffic rules. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, every time you are convicted of a traffic incident, you receive one or more points on your record and if you receive enough points within a set period, your license can be suspended, It is incumbent to drive safely to minimize the risk to everyone on the road. Learn how to make yourself or your teen a safe driver.

1. From January 2021, the driver is required to slow down or change lanes when approaching stationary vehicles with emergency lights, as they might be law enforcement officials responding to emergencies outside of duty hours.

2. Slowing: 50 percent of all traffic violations involve speeding. There is no minimum speed limit in the state, but one cannot drive so slowly that it impedes the flow of traffic.

3. Speeding: You are required to slow down your vehicle when you are in the following situations:

  • Toll plazas
  • In heavy traffic
  • Driving along narrow tunnels and bridges
  • Near residential districts, playgrounds, railway crossings, schools, blind intersections, alleyways, business districts, shopping centers, parking lots, and in downtown areas (15-25 mph). Approaching Speeding in these areas will lead to charges of unsafe and negligent driving.

4. Stopping: You cannot use guesswork to determine if the traffic flow is dangerous enough. Red lights, STOP signs, and other indicators are to be followed thoroughly.

5. Yielding: In order to clear a roadway as safely and quickly as possible, you need to adhere to the following guidelines:

  • If multiple vehicles enter an intersection with a dysfunctional signal light from different directions simultaneously, the driver on the right has the right of way.
  • Otherwise, the driver reaching the junction first has the right of way.

6. Using a phone while driving: It is prohibited to talk or respond to calls in any manner while driving. Moreover, starting July 1, driving while using a cell phone “in a handheld manner” (such as texting, playing games, etc.) will result in a poor driver’s record.

7. Being under Influence: You might think there is no harm in having just one drink. But California has strict laws against driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. You can even be arrested with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) below the legal limit of 0.08% if you are deemed unfit for driving for having slurry speech, unsteady manner of walking, and watery eyes, as these are sure indicators of one driving under the influence. However, if you are arrested on a DUI charge, do not spend your precious time behind bars for a petty crime. One may access Santa Barbara bail bonds to get out of jail with just 10% of the bail amount.

The above list is not exhaustive, and you should refer to your driver’s handbook for more parking information, overtaking and passing, and other relevant laws. The most common, everyday charges are non-violent. Remember, you are punished differently for first and subsequent offenses; by utilizing a bail bond, you can get rid of unnecessary jail time and reduce punitive actions taken by the court later on.

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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