Vehicle Code 22450 VC - Running a Stop Sign in California
Under California law, drivers are required to stop at all stop signs fully. Vehicle Code 22450 VC outlines the specific rules for stopping at intersections and railroad crossings. This law is called "special stops," designed to provide safety and prevent accidents. It gives all drivers the same set of rules to follow.
This law prohibits rolling stops. You are required to come to a complete stop. Further, when approaching a railroad grade, you must stop at the limit line before crossing the track. Suppose there is no limit line. In that case, you must come to a complete stop at the entrance of the railroad grade crossing.
This law also permits authorities to place stop signs at any location along a highway to enhance traffic safety.
VC 22450 VC says, ”(a) The driver of any vehicle approaching a stop sign at the entrance to, or within, an intersection shall stop at a limit line, if marked, otherwise before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection.
If there is no limit line or crosswalk, the driver shall stop at the entrance to the intersecting roadway.
(b) The driver of a vehicle approaching a stop sign at a railroad grade crossing shall stop at a limit line, if marked otherwise, before crossing the first track or entrance to the railroad grade crossing.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a local authority may adopt rules and regulations by ordinance or resolution providing for the placement of a stop sign at any location on a highway under its jurisdiction where the stop sign would enhance traffic safety.”
If you are given a ticket for violating this law, you face a fine and one point on your driving record. Let's review this law further below.
What are the Requirements for Stopping at Stop Signs?
Vehicle Code 22450 required drivers to stop at the limit line or before entering the crosswalk. Suppose there is neither. In that case, drivers have to stop at the nearest point intersecting the road, giving a clear view of approaching traffic.
For railroad grade crossings, the same rules apply. You must stop at the at the limit line. Simply put, when stopping at stop signs, you must bring your car to a complete stop, meaning that your vehicle is at zero speed and not moving forward.
To comply with Vehicle Code 22450, drivers should follow these proper stopping techniques:
- Start slowing down your car early as you approach a stop sign.
- Bring your vehicle to a complete stop before the limit line or crosswalk. As noted, "rolling stops" or simply slowing to a crawl before going through the stop sign is prohibited. A complete stop means your speed shows zero mph, and your tires are not moving.
- Stay alert for oncoming traffic, crossing pedestrians, or cyclists.
- Remember to yield the right-of-way to any vehicles or pedestrians that arrive at the intersection before you.
- Only proceed through the intersection when it is safe to do so.
What Are the Related Laws?
California has some other laws that are related to Vehicle Code 22450 VC running a stop sign, including the following:
- Vehicle Code 21453(a) VC – stop at red lights;
- Vehicle Code 21802(a) VC – yield to others at stop signs;
- Vehicle Code 21803(a) VC – yield at stop signs;
- Vehicle Code 23103 VC - reckless driving;
- Vehicle Code 2800.2 VC - reckless evading
- Penal Code 470b PC - possession of fake driver's license.
What Are the VC 22450 Penalties?
Failing to stop at a stop sign or railroad crossing is an infraction, which is not considered a crime. The penalties include the following:
- A $238 standard fine;
- You will also get one point on your driving record. Accumulating too many points can lead to license suspension.
If you are cited for VC 22450 for failing to stop, you can attend traffic school once every 18 months to avoid getting points on your DMV record. You risk getting a negligent operator license suspension if you get four points in 12 months, six points in 24 months, or eight points in 36 months.
Further, you might face increased insurance premiums because the more points you have on your driving record, the higher your risk is perceived by insurance carriers.
Failure to Appear
Suppose you ignore the ticket and don't appear in traffic court at your appointed time. In that case, it's a failure to appear crime under Vehicle Code 40508 VC, a misdemeanor. A conviction carries fines of up to $1000 and up to 6 months in jail.
Notably, it does not matter whether you're innocent or guilty of the underlying VC 22450 traffic citation. You violate VC 40508 VC by breaking a promise to appear in court, pay bail, pay a fine, or comply with any condition of the court.
What Are the VC 22450 Defenses?
Suppose you want to challenge the VC 22450 citation in court. A lawyer can be retained to handle your case in court, and you will not need to appear personally. There are several possible defenses we could use, as discussed below.
Maybe we can argue that you had an obstructed view and did not see the stop sign. Authorities are responsible for ensuring that all traffic control signs are visible to drivers.
Suppose the stop sign or limit line was obstructed due to factors beyond your control, such as overgrown trees or damaged signs. In that case, this argument might be used to dismiss the ticket.
Maybe we can argue that there was a lack of proper signage. Perhaps we can show that the stop sign was not installed correctly per California's guidelines, such as the correct height or visibility.
Maybe we can argue that you did come to a complete stop. The police officer who cited you must prove you failed to go to a full stop. Maybe you have evidence to prove you did stop, such as a dashboard camera or witnesses. Perhaps we can argue that you had an emergency.
You can contact our law firm for a free case review by phone or through the contact form. Cron, Israels & Stark has offices in Los Angeles, CA.