California Vehicle Code 23112
California’s beautiful natural landscape is arguably its greatest feature, but it takes the effort of all individuals who visit and reside in the state to ensure California can remain beautiful for years to come. Years ago the memorable “Don’t be a Litterbug” campaign sought to educate individuals on the negative impact of littering and to remind us to clear up after ourselves. However, mistakes do happen and litter or trash can end up outside of the vehicle, resulting in a violation of CVC 23112.
What does the California Code say about Littering on a highway?
CVC Section 23112 has two key sections. The first section states,
(a) No person shall throw or deposit, nor shall the registered owner or the driver, if such owner is not then present in the vehicle, aid or abet in the throwing or depositing upon any highway any bottle, can, garbage, glass, nail, offal, paper, wire, any substance likely to injure or damage traffic using the highway, or any noisome, nauseous, or offensive matter of any kind.
This section outlines some main examples of the types of items we typically understand to be litter, and prohibits it from being ejected from the vehicle. One key point of interest to take away from this vehicle code is that the owner of the vehicle can be held responsible if items or debris are thrown out of their vehicle even if they are not present in the vehicle. California takes its environmental policies extremely seriously, which is reflected in the spirit of this code.
The second section states,
(b) No person shall place, deposit, or dump, or cause to be placed, deposited, or dumped, any rocks, refuse, garbage, or dirt in or upon any highway, including any portion of the right-of-way thereof, without the consent of the state or local agency having jurisdiction over the highway.
In contrast to the first section which focuses on items most of us understand should not be thrown out of a vehicle, but what about dirt or rocks? You might often find dirt or rocks on the side of the roadway, but you are legally not permitted to dump this kind of material on the highway without the consent of the proper authorities.
Citations of this nature carry a minimum fine of $489 for a first offense.
Have you recently received a California traffic ticket under CVC 23112? Contact our office to discuss how we can help you avoid court, fines, and increased insurance rates. We also offer a free citation review.