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Broken Red Light TicketWhat to Do about a Broken Red Light?

Although a red light ticket or a ticket for running a stop sign are two of the most commonly issued tickets in California, law enforcement (LE) officers and judges take these tickets very seriously because of the inherent danger of deadly collisions with other vehicles and pedestrians. A red light ticket will cost $480 with fees, surcharges, and assessments.

Have you ever come up to a traffic light that you know is there, but it is not working and wonder what you should do? Should you stop or just keep going? Safety and common sense would tell you to stop because someone might be coming from the other direction and not know there is a light there, particularly at night, in a dark neighborhood. Accidents at a broken red light are almost twice as likely, so you should use even more care than normal. If you know that you should treat a broken red light as if it were a four-way stop, then you are good to go!

CA Drivers’ Handbook on Traffic Lights publishes an online Handbook, where you can read exactly what is written about every traffic signal scenario, but for this article we will excerpt some of the less common occurrences many may not be familiar with and discuss what to do as each occurs and what to do when you get it wrong and get a ticket. You can also find the answers on the CADMV Facebook page.

Now, what about a flashing red light? Do you know what action to take? The following is some good to know information regarding traffic signals and enforcement:

· CA Vehicle Code (CVC) 21453 states where and when a vehicle must stop for a circular red light and red arrows, before the limit line as marked or prior to the pedestrian crosswalk and you may not move forward or in the direction of the arrow until the light is green; however, you may turn right, after a full stop, if it is safe to do so.

· CVC 21455.5 establishes the authority, inspections, and limits for an automatic traffic enforcement system (ATES) or a red light ticket camera and stipulates that only after the photos and video has been reviewed by an LE officer can a ticket be delivered to the violator. These cameras may also record violations of a broken red light.

· CVC 21457 discusses both a flashing red, where you must come to a complete stop before proceeding and a flashing yellow light, where you must slow down and check for traffic.

· CVC 21464 prohibits the use of any device to alter or interrupt a traffic signal or to remove/deface signs or signals and prescribes a fine not to exceed $5000 for violations that do not cause injuries.

Hire a Neighborhood Traffic Ticket Lawyer

When you get a red light ticket, call Bigger & Harman, 661-349-9300 for a FREE phone consultation before you decide on what action you should take. In many cases, LE officers who witnessed you roll through a red light were not properly positioned. They might not have seen you stop behind the limit line and then roll forward to check traffic before proceeding. You should go back to where you received the ticket and take a picture from where the LE officer’s car was situated, it could be very telling. Additionally, if you were driving along at 45-50 mph after dark, you may not have even known there was a red light at that location until it was too late to stop safely.

Just paying the fine and opting for traffic school could cost you over $500. Send an email Bigger & Harman are your neighborhood ticket defenders and regularly represent clients in Central Valley CA in traffic courts in Hanford, Bakersfield, or Independence courtrooms in Kings, Kern, Inyo, Fresno and other south-central counties, as well as some SoCal counties, such as Riverside, SLO, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles County.

En español, llame al 661-349-9755.
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