Several new traffic safety laws are set to go into effect in California on Jan. 1.
The bills that will make these laws effective on Jan. 1, were signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom after being approved by state lawmakers during the last legislative session, and California Highway Patrol is alerting the public about these upcoming changes. These new traffic safety laws cover a number of issues on our roadways from illegal sideshows to safety equipment for equestrian riders.
New Traffic Safety Laws For California Drivers
Here are some of the new traffic safety laws that will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2022:
Sideshow law (Assembly Bill 3): This law defines a “sideshow” event in California and strengthens penalties for violations tied to illegal street takeovers. AB 3 defines a sideshow as: “an event in which two or more persons block or impede traffic on a highway, for the purpose of performing motor vehicle stunts, motor vehicle speed contests, motor vehicle exhibitions of speed, or reckless driving, for spectators.”
The legislation does outline tough punishment for these offenses. However, the penalty part of the law won’t go into effect until July 1, 2025. When it does, a conviction under this law could suspend a driver’s license for 90 days to six months.
Tribal emergency vehicles (AB 798): This law removes restrictions on ambulances owned and operated by a fire department of one of more than 100 federally-recognized Native American tribes in the state. Also, a vehicle owned or operated by a federally-recognized tribe would be considered an authorized emergency vehicle when responding to emergency calls.
Equestrian safety gear (AB 974): This new law will require any person under the age of 18 to wear a helmet while riding a horse, mule, or donkey on a paved highway. Also, riders of all ages or their horses will be required to wear a lamp or reflective gear, if riding after dark. A violation could result in a $25 fine.
There is also another law that went into effect on July 1, 2021, which stated that anyone caught violating the hands-free law for a second time within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense will see a point added to their driver’s record.
As California car accident lawyers, we support all of these new traffic safety laws, which we hope will make our roadways safer. If you or a loved one has been injured as the result of a negligent driver, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries, damages, and losses. Contact an experienced car accident lawyer to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.