Importance of the Task of Driving
Operating a vehicle is a complex and serious task which is performed by the vast majority of the public. Understanding the rules is essential to avoiding potential injury or even death.
Sources of information on driving include the California Driver Handbook and the California Vehicle Code (CVC). These publications may be obtained from Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offices.
Can a driver turn left across double yellow lines?
Yes, but only when it is safe to do so. However, double yellow lines may not be crossed to pass other vehicles or to enter or leave a carpool lane. When there are two sets of solid double yellow lines, such lines stand for a solid wall. Do not turn or drive across them.
What do painted curbs mean?
- White curbs mean you can stop only long enough to pick up or drop off passengers or mail.
- Green curbs allow parking for a limited time, which is usually posted on a sign or on the curb.
- Yellow curbs allow stopping only long enough to load or unload things or people. Drivers of noncommercial vehicles are usually required to stay with the vehicle.
- Red curbs indicated that vehicles may not stop, stand, or park at the curb (except buses in bus zones).
- Blue curbs indicate parking for the disabled only. A placard or license plate marker issued by the DMV is required.
When is U-turn legal?
A U-turn should be made only from the far left lane on your side of the road. Lines may be crossed under the same rules as left turns, but only when the turn can be made safely. You may make a U-turn in a residential district when no vehicle is approaching you within 200 feet. U-turns may not be made across curbs, double sets of double yellow lines, or unpaved medians.
You may not make a U-turn where you cannot see at least 200 feet in each direction because of a hill, curve, fog or other reason. U-turns may not be made when a sign prohibits the turn, when a collision may occur, on a one-way street, or in front of a fire station. You may not make a U-turn in a business district except at intersections and openings in a concrete divider. Churches, apartments, clubs, and public buildings (other than schools) are considered part of a business district.
Does a pedestrian always have the right-of-way?
When in a marked or unmarked crosswalk, the pedestrian has the right-of-way. However, this does not mean a pedestrian can simply step in front of traffic. The CVC requires that "No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard." When not in a crosswalk, the pedestrian should yield the right-of-way to vehicles. In any case, the pedestrian should be especially cautious. Even with the right-of-way, the pedestrian will lose in any collision with a vehicle.
What is an unmarked crosswalk?
A crosswalk does not only exist when lines are marked on the street. An unmarked crosswalk exists at street intersections as the extension of the sidewalk areas across the street whenever the streets intersect at approximately right angles. However, signs may be placed prohibiting crossings.
Where is parking prohibited even if there are no signs?
Parking is prohibited:
- In an intersection.
- On a crosswalk (marked or unmarked).
- Within 15 feet of a fire hydrant or fire station driveway.
- Within 3 feet of a sidewalk ramp for the disabled.
- On a freeway, except in emergency.
- In front of a driveway.
- In a tunnel or on a bridge, unless signs permit parking.
- Within 7 feet of a railroad track.
- On the left side of a two-way street or the wrong direction on a one-way street.
- When the vehicle will be double parked.
- When traffic will be blocked.