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Old 06-23-2019, 10:36 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mototireguy View Post
Apologies if already clarified elsewhere.

Leo's please remind us...

Lane filtering/sharing is allowed on roads only with 1 lane in each direction roads as long as you don't cross the center line on the left side and don't cross the white line on the right side?

Or lane filtering/sharing is only allowed when there's 2 or more lanes of traffic in each direction and you're sharing in between the #1, #2, #3 etc lanes?
Lane sharing/splitting is not outlawed in California. It never was. In 2017 a "lane splitting" definition was enacted. It is not an enforceable section. It is only a definition. Here it is.

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CVC 21658.1(a) For the purposes of this section, “lane splitting” means driving a motorcycle, as defined in Section 400, that has two wheels in contact with the ground, between rows of stopped or moving vehicles in the same lane, including on both divided and undivided streets, roads, or highways.
Per the section above, California now defines "lane splitting" as splitting between rows of stopped or moving vehicles in the same lane. IMO, it's not the most clear definition, but seems to definite it as at least two lanes in the same direction.

However, nothing really changed as this is a definition only and not an enforceable section. There is no law that specifically prohibits sharing a single lane in one direction. Other sections could apply, like they always did, such as speeding, passing on the right, double yellow, bike lanes, and whatnot.

So sharing a single lane is legal as well as sharing between lanes in the same direction. Clear as mud.
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Old 06-24-2019, 10:13 AM   #17
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The easiest way to think of it is this:

“There is no law that defines how many vehicles can occupy a lane of traffic.”

If it fits, it’s legal. So a car and a motorcycle riding side by side is legal the same way two motorcycles riding side by side is legal. Three or four or five motorcycles riding side by side would be legal (although probably not very safe/smart) with this same understanding.

OP: When you go to court, present the case factually as you recall it happening. Things to avoid:

“I feel like...”
“I would never...”
“Other motos do it...”

Things to bring up:

The pictures are good. Explain the distance and view the officer had and how he could not have clearly seen the violation due to his distance and obstructed view. I’d take an aerial shot also from Google Maps.

Explain that you saw him in the middle of another traffic stop and his attention was clearly divided between the current stop and your approach to the intersection.

Tell the judge you filtered to the front, which is legal under CA law, but remained completely in your lane of traffic and never crossed the line into the bike lane.

There were no bicycles present, so traffic for the bicycle lane could not have been impeded, even though you did not cross into the bike lane.

You stopped at the light adjacent to the #1 vehicle at the light and prior to the limit line, keeping the crosswalk clear for pedestrian traffic.

Any other factual information you think is relevant.
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Old 06-24-2019, 06:35 PM   #18
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There's no clear consensus on the best approach. I am leaning toward contesting the ticket based on the facts and the circumstances. The rider certainly did not enter the bicycle lane. There were no bicycles in the bicycle lane and no pedestrians at the crosswalk while the rider was in the vicinity. The officer was standing 275 feet down the road handling another traffic stop with his view of the intersection blocked by his own vehicle, so I don't believe he was able to see clearly whether or not the rider went into the bicycle lane, crossed the solid white line into the buffer area between the car lane and the bike line, or moved into the crosswalk early. Instead, he saw the rider alongside cars and made a judgment call. The fact that he chose to cite 22400(a) also signals that he didn't see a more specific infraction. He did say: "it's not just you - everyone is getting tickets today." (That's an exact quote).

I also found Section 3B.24 in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD):
Section 3B.24 Chevron and Diagonal Crosshatch Markings
01 Chevron and diagonal crosshatch markings may be used to discourage travel on certain paved areas, such as shoulders, gore areas, flush median areas between solid double yellow center line markings or between white channelizing lines approaching obstructions in the roadway between solid double yellow center line markings forming flush medians or channelized travel paths at intersections, buffer spaces between preferential lanes and general-purpose lanes (see Figure 3D-2), and at grade crossings.
I do think the office ultimately believed that I crossed into the channel/buffer between the vehicle lane and the bike lane. However, discouraged travel is not prohibited travel. The buffer between the car lane and the bike lane is not a double white line, but a single white line buffer and these types of buffer channels discourage but do not prohibit vehicle crossing. Further support here, on pages 21-23.

Also worth noting is CA Vehicle Code 21401:
CV21401.
(a) Except as provided in Section 21374, only those official traffic control devices that conform to the uniform standards and specifications promulgated by the Department of Transportation shall be placed upon a street or highway.
Notice the markings at the intersection - not a double white line, but a single white line buffer channel designated with chevron markings per Section 3B.24 of the MUTCD:



This adds up to no prohibition from entering that channelized buffer zone between the vehicle lane and the bicycle lane.

Above all other things, none of this is applicable in the cited code CV22400(a), so why should I not feel confident that this will get dismissed?

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Old 06-24-2019, 07:35 PM   #19
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You are wrong on the white hash markings. That constitutes a painted island (like a curbed island only painted) dividing the roadway and is a violation of 21651(a)(1)VC.

Quote:
§ 21651. (a) Whenever a highway has been divided into two or more roadways by means of intermittent barriers or by means of a dividing section of not less than two feet in width, either unpaved or delineated by curbs, double-parallel lines, or other markings on the roadway, it is unlawful to do either of the following:
(1) To drive any vehicle over, upon, or across the dividing section.
(2) To make any left, semicircular, or U-turn with the vehicle on the divided highway, except through an opening in the barrier designated and intended by public authorities for the use of vehicles or through a plainly marked opening in the dividing section.
(b) It is unlawful to drive any vehicle upon a highway, except to the right of an intermittent barrier or a dividing section which separates two or more opposing lanes of traffic. Except as otherwise provided in subdivision (c), a violation of this subdivision is a misdemeanor.
(c) Any willful violation of subdivision (b) which results in injury to, or death of, a person shall be punished by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 of the Penal Code, or imprisonment in a county jail for a period of not more than six months.
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Old 06-24-2019, 07:47 PM   #20
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You are wrong on the white hash markings. That constitutes a painted island (like a curbed island only painted) dividing the roadway and is a violation of 21651(a)(1)VC.
I respectfully disagree, and apparently so does the CA DOT. See pages 11-13 of this from the CA DOT site, which I also linked above.

As further explained in that link and in the code itself, a double parallel white (or yellow) outline would be required to satisfy 21751(a). A single white outlined buffer area does not comport.

That buffer zone might look like two parallel white lines filled in by a chevron marked buffer area, but that's not the uniform standard for prohibited travel - it would have to be two close parallel lines on either side of the buffer zone to constitute a painted island according to the guidance from the DOT and the uniform standard, and even the code you quoted above.

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Old 06-24-2019, 08:15 PM   #21
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You may be right, but 21658 VC still applies.

Quote:
§ 21658. Whenever any roadway has been divided into two or more clearly marked lanes for traffic in one direction, the following rules apply:
(a) A vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practical entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from the lane until such movement can be made with reasonable safety.
(b) Official signs may be erected directing slow-moving traffic to use a designated lane or allocating specified lanes to traffic moving in the same direction, and drivers of vehicles shall obey the directions of the traffic device.
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Old 06-24-2019, 09:06 PM   #22
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You may be right, but 21658 VC still applies.
Thank you. I just wish I understood how it applies. If the rider made an unsafe lane change or took more than one full lane of travel, then it would certainly apply.

Anyway the actual citation is 22400(a), and I'm really wondering if the court could find an actual violation.

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Old 06-24-2019, 09:47 PM   #23
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It’s a failure to maintain a lane violation
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Old 06-24-2019, 09:49 PM   #24
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As for your violation, I suggest following the advice posted previously and file for discovery. You would get copies of the officer’s citation notes and any other evidence like audio or video recordings.
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Old 06-25-2019, 04:19 PM   #25
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Others, including one person here, have suggested trial by written declaration. The advantage to that seems to be that the officer might not have much incentive to write his statement. Another advantage is that no court appearance is required. It seems to have worked well for some, but there are certainly drawbacks to that approach that I can see.

I appreciate the advice from all. I still can't figure out how a 22400(a) can be upheld, but seeing the evidence would probably help shed more light. I'm wondering what possible evidence would support a violation. If the officer simply says he saw me stopped in either the crosswalk or in the bike lane and blocking the right of way, would that be enough?

Also, is it possible to bring another charge at court?

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Old 06-25-2019, 07:02 PM   #26
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Others, including one person here, have suggested trial by written declaration. The advantage to that seems to be that the officer might not have much incentive to write his statement. Another advantage is that no court appearance is required. It seems to have worked well for some, but there are certainly drawbacks to that approach that I can see.
If you're not happy with the outcome of a trial by written declaration, you can do a trial de novo. Basically, you can have a second chance at an in person trial with you and the officer in front of a judge.

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Originally Posted by Leftbrain View Post
I appreciate the advice from all. I still can't figure out how a 22400(a) can be upheld, but seeing the evidence would probably help shed more light. I'm wondering what possible evidence would support a violation. If the officer simply says he saw me stopped in either the crosswalk or in the bike lane and blocking the right of way, would that be enough?
Maybe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leftbrain View Post
Also, is it possible to bring another charge at court?
Possibly. The officer could ask the court to amend the charge to something more appropriate.

1) The officer may or may not request this.

2) The court may or may not grant it.
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Old 06-26-2019, 07:06 AM   #27
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I’ve requested to have a violation changed in trial before and have also seen it done several times by other officers. I’ve never seen it denied.

I suppose if the defendant asked the judge to continue the trial to another date to better prepare, the judge would consider it.
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Old 06-26-2019, 07:50 AM   #28
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I’ve requested to have a violation changed in trial before and have also seen it done several times by other officers. I’ve never seen it denied.

I suppose if the defendant asked the judge to continue the trial to another date to better prepare, the judge would consider it.
I saw one where a newer officer had screwed up and cited for the wrong section. The defendant successfully proved that the section he was cited for did not apply. The newer officer should have, but did not know he could, request the court to amend the charge. The defendant was found not guilty even though video showed him roll through a red signal without first stopping.
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Old 06-26-2019, 09:48 AM   #29
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Old 06-26-2019, 07:46 PM   #30
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