The CHP is "encouraging drivers to watch their speed" on a stretch
of roadway near the 101-23 interchange.
That's a polite way of saying that the construction zone is a high-enforcement area. The speed limit drops from 65 mph to 55 mph, and officials have reported a reduction in traffic accidents since the change took effect. The CHP stated that construction zones in general have a much higher accident rate.
Work at this interchange is expected to last another two years, as crews add a retaining wall, a sound wall, an extra lane and other improvements.
Federal Traffic Ticket
In addition to "construction zone," there's another sign that can significantly affect your traffic ticket in Kern County: "You Are Now Entering Federal Property." Sometimes there is no warning at all, and California motorists do not even realize they received a federal traffic ticket until they look at the top of the citation.
Aside from the issuing agency, there are a number of differences between a state and a federal traffic ticket in Kern County:
- Location: Instead of the local municipal courthouse, an accused motorist will have to appear in Bakersfield. That could mean two or three additional driving hours for many High Desert residents.
- Court Date: Many local judges tend to be flexible about resetting court appearances, but federal judges generally don't move a date without a very compelling reason. The Bakersfield Federal Court only has traffic four days a year.
- Protocol: Local judges are somewhat tolerant of people who may not know all the written and unwritten procedural rules, but the pomp and circumstance that goes with the federal court system can create a situation where judges are not as forgiving.
Any speeding ticket is a costly inconvenience at best, but a federal speeding ticket can be very costly, especially if you do not have an attorney regularly practicing in federal court at your side.