California Vehicle Code 22103—Residential U-Turn
It is unlawful to make a U-turn in a residential area under certain circumstances. CVC 22103 states:
“No person in a residence district shall make a U-turn when any other vehicle is approaching from either direction within 200 feet, except at an intersection when the approaching vehicle is controlled by an official traffic control device.”
If you are in an unfamiliar neighborhood or you forgot something at home and want to return, making a U-turn is not an uncommon maneuver and is generally safe since speed limits are low in residential areas. But a U-turn can be hazardous at times, since an approaching vehicle is expecting you to turn left or right and will continue to proceed on the roadway.
CVC 22103 is intended to make traffic safer in neighborhoods where pedestrians/children are present and to make sure motorists make U- turns at specific areas when other vehicles are at a safe distance.
Defenses in a CVC 22103 Case
Here are the most popular defenses to an alleged violation of CVC 22103:
- Were you in a residence district? Under Vehicle Code 515, you can find the definition of a residence district. If you were making your turn in an area where there are few residences, then you might have made a legal U-turn.
- The other vehicle was more than 200 feet away. If you can pinpoint the location where you were making your turn and the spot where you noticed the approaching vehicle and measured it as being more than 200 feet away, then you might have a defense.
- Was there a traffic control device at the intersection where you made your U-turn?
At the end of the day, officers issue citations based on their discretion and cursory understanding of the situation. Vehicle codes are complicated and it is up to the officer to demonstrate proof of all facts of the case beyond a reasonable doubt to uphold a citation.
If you are ticketed for making an unlawful or unsafe U-turn in a residential area, you could be facing a fine of $237 plus a point on your driving record. However, our team may be able to help. Reach out to us today or submit your ticket for a free citation review.