Regulation of Turns at Intersections - CVC 22101
California Vehicle Code 22101 Section 22101(d) makes it illegal to disobey the direction of an official traffic control device under two specific circumstances. Those circumstances are:
- The failure to make a required turn. This offense usually arises when the driver is in a “right (or left) turn only” lane and fails to turn.
- Disobedience of a sign that prohibits a turn. Disobeying a “no right turn on red” sign is the most common example of that violation.
If an officer writes a traffic ticket for disobeying section 22101(d) but is basing the charge on anything other than making a forbidden turn or failing to make a required turn, a traffic ticket expert will have a golden opportunity. Contesting a ticket is the best way to get the ticket dismissed. Other defenses/options are also available based on the circumstances of the ticket.
Traffic control device
Section 22101(d) of the California Vehicle Code applies when the state or local government has installed an “official traffic control device” within or adjacent to an intersection. An official traffic control device is any sign, signal, marking, or device that was placed or erected for the purpose of regulating, warning, or guiding traffic.
A traffic light is an example of a traffic control device
So is a “no right turn on red” sign. If the traffic control device exists, the law presumes that it was placed there by an appropriate government agency. In other words, the prosecutor does not need to prove that fact. The burden is on the ticketed driver to prove that the government was not authorized to erect or place the device in that location. In unusual cases, a traffic ticket advocate can raise that defense successfully.
It is also a defense if the sign or other device was not “in or adjacent to” the intersection. If you are ticketed for disobeying a sign that was posted half a block from the intersection, your traffic ticket expert can use it in your case to make a strong argument that the sign was not “adjacent to” the intersection.
Restricted turns during specific times of the day
There are times throughout the day when making certain turns are deemed illegal. The most common example of this type of citation is a “no turn on red”. These time periods are usually during high volume hours such as 7 am - 9 am (morning commute) and 4 pm - 6 pm (after work drive home). These restrictions are in place in efforts to keep the flow of traffic moving at the highest pace possible during high traffic volume hours. There are also time periods throughout the day regulating the speed on certain roads such as school zones. You want to always be aware of the area and time of day you are traveling to avoid any restricted vehicular actions.
It is illegal to disobey a sign that requires a driver to make a turn. Disobeying a “right turn only” is a common example of the circumstance, that requires a driver to make a turn. A sign is not necessary if lane markings indicate that a lane is a “right turn only” or “left turn only” lane.
However, lane markings are often difficult to see, particularly when they have not been repainted in a number of years. The law requires drivers to be given notice of the required turn.
If the lane markings were too difficult to see, a traffic ticket advocate can help you with a strong argument for dismissal of the ticket. Drivers have received tickets for using the wrong lane when entering the intersection; one of the common complaints we hear are officers not viewing which lane was used when the driver entered the intersection. Citations are issued in error by officers that make assumptions of a motorists actions based on the location of the vehicle, that is why it is important to contest a ticket. A traffic ticket expert can look into your case for arguments to use for a dismissal of the ticket.
Did you receive a citation for CVC 22101? This violation carries a point and a minimum fine of $237. Reach out to our team today to understand your options with the citation. We offer a free ticket review.