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  1. #1

    Default Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: California

    I am trying to figure out if speed trap laws apply to a senior zone. The book that I have says they do not, but when I read the law I can't seem to figure out why they wouldn't.

    Heres the law:

    Quote Quoting 40802

    (a) A “speed trap” is either of the following:

    (1) A particular section of a highway measured as to distance and with boundaries marked, designated, or otherwise determined in order that the speed of a vehicle may be calculated by securing the time it takes the vehicle to travel the known distance.

    (2) A particular section of a highway with a prima facie speed limit that is provided by this code or by local ordinance under paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 22352, or established under Section 22354, 22357, 22358, or 22358.3, if that prima facie speed limit is not justified by an engineering and traffic survey conducted within five years prior to the date of the alleged violation, and enforcement of the speed limit involves the use of radar or any other electronic device that measures the speed of moving objects. This paragraph does not apply to a local street, road, or school zone.
    (b)
    (1) For purposes of this section, a local street or road is one that is functionally classified as “local” on the “California Road System Maps,” that are approved by the Federal Highway Administration and maintained by the Department of Transportation. When a street or road does not appear on the “California Road System Maps,” it may be defined as a “local street or road” if it primarily provides access to abutting residential property and meets the following three conditions:

    (A) Roadway width of not more than 40 feet.

    (B) Not more than one-half of a mile of uninterrupted length. Interruptions shall include official traffic control signals as defined in Section 445.

    (C) Not more than one traffic lane in each direction.

    (2) For purposes of this section, “school zone” means that area approaching or passing a school building or the grounds thereof that is contiguous to a highway and on which is posted a standard “SCHOOL” warning sign, while children are going to or leaving the school either during school hours or during the noon recess period. “School zone” also includes the area approaching or passing any school grounds that are not separated from the highway by a fence, gate, or other physical barrier while the grounds are in use by children if that highway is posted with a standard “SCHOOL” warning sign.

    (c)
    (1) When all of the following criteria are met, paragraph (2) of this subdivision shall be applicable and subdivision (a) shall not be applicable:

    (A) When radar is used, the arresting officer has successfully completed a radar operator course of not less than 24 hours on the use of police traffic radar, and the course was approved and certified by the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.

    (B) When laser or any other electronic device is used to measure the speed of moving objects, the arresting officer has successfully completed the training required in subparagraph (A) and an additional training course of not less than two hours approved and certified by the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.

    (C)
    (i) The prosecution proved that the arresting officer complied with subparagraphs (A) and (B) and that an engineering and traffic survey has been conducted in accordance with subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2). The prosecution proved that, prior to the officer issuing the notice to appear, the arresting officer established that the radar, laser, or other electronic device conformed to the requirements of subparagraph (D).

    (ii) The prosecution proved the speed of the accused was unsafe for the conditions present at the time of alleged violation unless the citation was for a violation of Section 22349, 22356, or 22406.

    (D) The radar, laser, or other electronic device used to measure the speed of the accused meets or exceeds the minimal operational standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and has been calibrated within the three years prior to the date of the alleged violation by an independent certified laser or radar repair and testing or calibration facility.
    (2) A “speed trap” is either of the following:

    (A) A particular section of a highway measured as to distance and with boundaries marked, designated, or otherwise determined in order that the speed of a vehicle may be calculated by securing the time it takes the vehicle to travel the known distance.

    (B)
    (i) A particular section of a highway or state highway with a prima facie speed limit that is provided by this code or by local ordinance under paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 22352, or established under Section 22354, 22357, 22358, or 22358.3, if that prima facie speed limit is not justified by an engineering and traffic survey conducted within one of the following time periods, prior to the date of the alleged violation, and enforcement of the speed limit involves the use of radar or any other electronic device that measures the speed of moving objects:

    (I) Except as specified in subclause (II), seven years.

    (II) If an engineering and traffic survey was conducted more than seven years prior to the date of the alleged violation, and a registered engineer evaluates the section of the highway and determines that no significant changes in roadway or traffic conditions have occurred, including, but not limited to, changes in adjoining property or land use, roadway width, or traffic volume, 10 years.

    (ii) This subparagraph does not apply to a local street, road, or school zone.
    The particular part I am curious about is this:

    Quote Quoting 40802(a)(2)
    A particular section of a highway with a prima facie speed limit that is provided by this code or by local ordinance under paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 22352, or established under Section 22354, 22357, 22358, or 22358.3, if that prima facie speed limit....
    I read this to say, broken into parts:

    A particular part of a highway or state highway
    with a prima facie speed limit [as opposed to a maximum speed limit]
    that is either:
    provided by this code
    provided by local ordinance under paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 22352
    or established under Section 22354, 22357, 22358, or 22358.3

    From what I can tell a senior zone is a prima facie limit and is provided by the CVC. CVC 22352

    Did my interpretation go wrong somewhere? Is a senior zone not "provided by this code"?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
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    California
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    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    A designated senior zone on a local road with the appropriate signage does not constitute a speed trap if that's your question.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    19,280

    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    The "senior zone" is immaterial here. The only thing that matters is the sign is properly posted. You're pretty much going to have to assume it is. The only thing that remains to be determined is whether this is a "local road."
    If that is the case, you can't avail yourself of the speed trap defense. If it is not a local road (and not in a school zone), then they would need a engineering survey to support the posted speeds.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    Flyingron,

    See that's my interpretation too but why does Judge Jason A. Clay of the Alameda County Court say that the "Senior Zone" is material here?

    https://www.dailyjournal.com/mcle/38...-are-necessary

    Where in the law is this supported?

    LegalWriter,
    Quote Quoting LegalWriter
    A designated senior zone on a local road with the appropriate signage does not constitute a speed trap if that's your question.
    That's not my question. My question is the title of this post and more specifically why.

    EDIT: I figured it out, I was reading the law wrong. Because the placement of the commas this part should read "provided by this code provided or by local ordinance under paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 22352" all at once. This means that only prima facie limits established/provided by 22352b1, 22354, 22357, 22358, 22358.3 are subject to anti speed trap laws. Which means that senior zones are not subject to them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    California
    Posts
    423

    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    All he says is that a traffic survey isn't necessary for that type of zone and it isn't as long as it's along a local road and not a highway.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    Judge Clay is talking about when a traffic survey is necessary [pursuant to the legal definition of a speed trap when radar/LIDAR is used, 40802 (a) (2)], the law I posted and have been talking about this entire time.

    Very few roads in California are "local roads" per the legal definition in the code. I would bet over 90% of roads in CA posted as "SENIOR" are not local roads. If it is a local road per the very clear definition its obvious that the anti speed trap laws would not apply.

    That being said this question and thread has nothing to do with local roads. The question of this thread was whether or not a senior zone (obviously not also otherwise a school zone or local road) was subject to the anti speed trap laws of California. Specifically the laws involving radar/LIDAR.

    The answer is; No, a senior zone is not subject to the anti speed trap laws when radar/LIDAR is used because the definition of a speed trap when radar/LIDAR is used, 40802(a)(2), only applies to prima facie limits that were established/provided by either 22352b1, 22354, 22357, 22358, or 22358.3. Senior zone limits are not, they are established by 22352b3, therefore the anti speed trap laws do not apply.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    326

    Default Re: Do California Speed Trap Laws Apply to a Senior Zone

    Reading CVC 40802 and 22352, it would appear that speed trap laws do not apply in a senior zone (i.e., no traffic and engineering study is required) , but only if there is no posted speed limit or if that posted speed limit is 25mph.

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