Operating a Vehicle in Bicycle Lane

California Vehicle Code (CVC) § 21209

Officer issuing Operating a Vehicle in Bicycle Lane in California

A Operating a Vehicle in Bicycle Lane ticket will cost you $238 in fines plus $1,000+ in insurance hikes and penalties.

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Bicycle lanes have been a part of the American driving landscape for decades, with California pioneering their development 50 years ago. The tiny town of Davis, California saw the very first bike lane, which was slightly less than a mile long, painted onto one of its streets in late July 1967. Since that time, bike lanes have sprung up all over the place and can be seen just about everywhere, from small towns to large cities and municipalities of all sizes.

Along with bicycle lanes have come a series of laws to help keep users of those lanes safe. Various laws concerning bicycle lanes are covered by California Vehicle Codes 21200 through 21213, allowing for a wide variety of regulations that are to be followed by both bicyclists and motorists alike. A violation of any one of vehicle codes can result in a bicyclist or motorist receiving a ticket from a law enforcement officer. California Vehicle Code 21209 covers several points related to motorists’ behavior regarding the lanes.

CVC 21209 states:

(a) No person shall drive a motor vehicle in a bicycle lane established on a roadway pursuant to Section 21207 except as follows:

  1. To park where parking is permitted.
  2. To enter or leave the roadway.
  3. To prepare for a turn within a distance of 200 feet from the intersection.

(b) This section does not prohibit the use of a motorized bicycle in a bicycle lane, pursuant to Section 21207.5, at a speed no greater than is reasonable or prudent, having due regard for visibility, traffic conditions, and the condition of the roadway surface of the bicycle lane, and in a manner which does not endanger the safety of bicyclists.

As you can see, CVC 21209 covers several aspects of how motorists can violate proper usage of bicycle lanes including parking, entering or leaving the roadway and preparing for a turn to be made at an upcoming intersection, as well as limited use of a motorized bicycle in bike lanes.

Bicycle Lane Violations can effect your Permanent Driving Record

While there are some vehicle codes that seem pretty cut and dried, there is actually quite a bit of leeway in the determination of whether a violation actually occurred.

In the event law enforcement sees a driver violating any one of the points covered under CVC 21209, a traffic ticket is likely to be issued. One of these traffic tickets will cost a driver $238 in fines and fees, as well as a point added to their driver’s license. For many people, that doesn’t seem like a huge amount of money, and that it would be easier to simply pay the fine and accept the consequences rather than go to court and fight the ticket, possibly lose the case, and end up having to pay it anyway.

However, the $238 payment is only the beginning. A moving violation on your driving record will raise your automobile insurance premium for several years, and just one point on your driver’s license could raise your premium up to 22%. According to Value Penguin, the average driver in California pays about $164 per month for automobile insurance. A 22% increase would add up to more than $432 extra every year for 3 years, or a total of nearly $1,300 in extra premiums over time. That’s in addition to the money paid for the fine and fees, meaning that one simple ticket could cost you over $1,500!

The good news is, you don’t have to pay for all that or take a day off work to go to court and face an uncertain judgment. Ticket Snipers will help fight your ticket for you.

The legal experts at Ticket Snipers specialize in fighting California traffic tickets. It’s the only thing we do, and we do it every day. Our team is trained in the most efficient and cost effective ways of legally fighting traffic tickets in California. We are accredited, bonded and licensed to handle just about any kind of California traffic ticket.

For a flat fee equaling less than just the fines and fees you would pay, Ticket Snipers will help fight your ticket for you. The best part is, if we don’t win, you get your service fee back. It’s that simple. Contact Ticket Snipers right now and see how we can keep you out of the courtroom and your driving record clean.