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10/20/2017 1:01:18 AM
9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 9/24/2005 5:31:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/24/2005 7:39:18 PM EDT by DPeacher]
While driving into work on Thursday, traffic was backed up for the stop light at the intersection where my office building is located. To enter the office park, one must make a right turn at the light. The right turn lane is a continuation of the improved shoulder of the road. I reduced my speed to below 20 mph as I approached the slowing and stopped traffic, signaled, and moved right, from the main portion of the highway onto the improved shoulder where I cautiously passed the stopped traffic and approached the intersection.

While doing this, I passed an Austin PD cruiser. Officer friendly hit the lights and pulled out behind me. I assessed the situation and decided that for safety reasons it would be best to continue with the right turn at the intersection and enter the parking lot instead of stopping on the improved shoulder which would force the APD officer to stand within inches of rush hour traffic, and block traffic trying to make the right turn into the office park. The distance covered from the time the officer hit the lights to the parking lot is about 300 yards at the very most.

I rolled down the window, turned off the engine, and placed both hands on the steering wheel. The Officer admonished me for not stopping on the shoulder as soon as he hit his lights. The Officer took my DL and proof of insurance, went back to his car, then presented me with a traffic violation for "Drove on improved shoulder in violation of 545.058". No other violations were noted on the citation. I remained emotionally neutral for the entire encounter.

www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/docs/TN/content/word/tn.007.00.000545.00.doc

Sec. 545.058. DRIVING ON IMPROVED SHOULDER. (a) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the right of the main traveled portion of a roadway if that operation is necessary and may be done safely, but only:
(1) to stop, stand, or park;
(2) to accelerate before entering the main traveled lane of traffic;
(3) to decelerate before making a right turn;
(4) to pass another vehicle that is slowing or stopped on the main traveled portion of the highway, disabled, or preparing to make a left turn;
(5) to allow another vehicle traveling faster to pass;
(6) as permitted or required by an official traffic-control device; or
(7) to avoid a collision.
(b) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the left of the main traveled portion of a divided or limited-access or controlled-access highway if that operation may be done safely, but only:
(1) to slow or stop when the vehicle is disabled and traffic or other circumstances prohibit the safe movement of the vehicle to the shoulder to the right of the main traveled portion of the roadway;
(2) as permitted or required by an official traffic-control device; or
(3) to avoid a collision.
(c) A limitation in this section on driving on an improved shoulder does not apply to:
(1) an authorized emergency vehicle responding to a call;
(2) a police patrol; or
(3) a bicycle.
Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



It appears to me that I was issued a traffic citation for obeying the law to the letter. Am I misreading the statute above? I don't think I have broken ANY laws in this matter, but I just want to make sure before I decide my next course of action.

Thanks in advance for your considered thoughts and opinions.
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 5:46:05 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/24/2005 5:50:49 PM EDT by hrt4me]

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
Sec. 545.058. DRIVING ON IMPROVED SHOULDER. (a) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the right of the main traveled portion of a roadway if that operation is necessary and may be done safely, but only:
(1) to stop, stand, or park;
(2) to accelerate before entering the main traveled lane of traffic;
(3) to decelerate before making a right turn;
(4) to pass another vehicle that is slowing or stopped on the main traveled portion of the highway, disabled, or preparing to make a left turn;
(5) to allow another vehicle traveling faster to pass;
(6) as permitted or required by an official traffic-control device; or
(7) to avoid a collision.
(b) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the left of the main traveled portion of a divided or limited-access or controlled-access highway if that operation may be done safely, but only:
(1) to slow or stop when the vehicle is disabled and traffic or other circumstances prohibit the safe movement of the vehicle to the shoulder to the right of the main traveled portion of the roadway;
(2) as permitted or required by an official traffic-control device; or
(3) to avoid a collision.
(c) A limitation in this section on driving on an improved shoulder does not apply to:
(1) an authorized emergency vehicle responding to a call;
(2) a police patrol; or
(3) a bicycle.
Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1995.

It appears to me that I was issued a traffic citation for obeying the law to the letter. Am I misreading the statute above? I don't think I have broken ANY laws in this matter, but I just want to make sure before I decide my next course of action.

Thanks in advance for your considered thoughts and opinions.



Most likely in the officer's opinion, it was not necessary for you to be on the shoulder in the first place, and the officer will most likely argue you could have just waited in traffic until you got to the established right-hand turn lane. I'd say just pay the fine and forget about it.

Keep in mind, you asked for free legal advice, and so take this for what it's worth. Besides, I've been inactive with the Louisiana State Bar Association for 6 years now, so I couldn't practice now anyway even if I wanted until I re-activate and catch up on my CLE's, and then take the bar exam in Texas (which I don't plan on doing). <--- to match my post number!
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 5:55:04 PM EDT

Originally Posted By hrt4me:
[
Most likely in the officer's opinion, it was not necessaryfor you to be on the shoulder in the first place, and he will most likely argue you could have just waited in traffic until you got to the established right-hand turn lane. I'd say just pay the fine and forget about it.




Bach, the Devil is in that post.... 666

Thanks for pointing out that the definition of 'necessary' can be debated as much as the definition of the word 'is'. That is exactly the type of info I will need to consider.
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 6:07:17 PM EDT
Why would it be 'necessary' to wait in traffic when the improved shoulder can be safely used to pass vehicles stopped or slowing in the main portion of the travelled roadway?

It was 'necessary' for me to make the right turn to enter my place of work. It was 'necessary' to use the improved shoulder to make that right turn in a legal manner.

I am unable to find any reference that it is illegal to cross a single solid white line.
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 6:09:46 PM EDT
I'll chime in with a similar situation about a wreck I was involved in one year ago.

Scene: 4 lane highway, center turnlane, improved shoulder

Circumstance: Morning rush hour, cars backed up about 1/2 mile to a stoplight.

Me: Trying to make a left turn down an access road between the gap of the cars lined up 1/4 mile back from the stoplight.

As I pull slooooooowly across, and my truck inches in between the cars and crosses onto the shoulder/driveway - BAM!!! I get nailed by a chick in a Honda Accord flying down the access road.

Result: I get a ticket for failure to give right of way. Cop says she maintains that she said she was trying to turn right down the same access road.

My interpretation: BULLSHIT. She hit me so hard my truck (Silverado 1500) instantly turned 90 degrees.

So it appears that in this case, the cops believed the cute girl (go figure), although it should have been obvious from the physical evidence that she wasn't turning into that driveway. She was probably heading down further to a gas station or some fast-food joints.

So Peacher gets a ticket for going down the shoulder, I get a ticket for not letting someone drive down the shoulder.

WTF?
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 8:16:36 PM EDT
It all boils down to this.. the cop didn't like what you were doing prior to pulling you over so he pulled you over. In the act of doing so, he picks out the easiest way to write you a citation since your background check came back empty. Ball's in your court now.. if you have the time, the legal representation, and the motivation, by all means bring this one to court and have it dismissed. It would be nice if he just wrote warning, but he wrote a ticket. We could speculate for years why.. indigestion, quota, racial bias, educational superiority, yada yada yada. If it wasn't one thing, he'd write up something else.. maybe another moving infraction, maybe a license plate frame violation (you laugh, but it's been tried on me). Of course, dismissing the ticket may be the same time/effort as deferring it, taking defensive driving, and having a discount on your car insurance.

Take the above with a grain of salt.. I'm not a lawyer nor did I stay at a Holiday Inn.
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 10:56:43 PM EDT
You are lucky you didnt get arrested.

Ben, The_Emu
Link Posted: 9/24/2005 11:09:37 PM EDT
My free advice is to plead not guilty and request a trial by jury.
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 5:25:37 AM EDT
LonghornAR - I've already taken defensive driving, and have the discount.

Emu - Arrested? Shit, I'm lucky I didn't get shot for fleeing from an Officer of the LAW!

OFFascist - That is certainly one of the options I am considering. But I'm not quite sure if that is the best option at this time. Time is my most precious resource right now. Time to gather information, time to determine my best course of action, time to act.
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 8:44:02 AM EDT
I am unable to find any reference that it is illegal to cross a single solid white line.

See what it says about crossing a physical barrier.

Crossing the white line entering or exiting the freeway in the D/FW area is a big revenue generator.
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 9:54:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Gopher:
I am unable to find any reference that it is illegal to cross a single solid white line.

See what it says about crossing a physical barrier.

Crossing the white line entering or exiting the freeway in the D/FW area is a big revenue generator.



I remember in driver's ed, Texas had the statement "white lines should not be crossed" in their book - however there is a dbig difference between "shall not" and "should not".
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 10:03:47 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/25/2005 10:11:31 AM EDT by mikejohnson]

Originally Posted By DPeacher:
I am unable to find any reference that it is illegal to cross a single solid white line.



It is not illegal to cross single solid white lines. Why do you think there are double white lines that SHALL NOT be crossed?
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 11:02:26 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/25/2005 11:06:12 AM EDT by DPeacher]

Originally Posted By Gopher:
I am unable to find any reference that it is illegal to cross a single solid white line.

See what it says about crossing a physical barrier.

Crossing the white line entering or exiting the freeway in the D/FW area is a big revenue generator.



A physical barrier would be a grass median, guard rail, curb, wall. I can find no reference that states a white line is considered a physical barrier.


From the Texas Drivers Handbook
Chapter 5 - Signals, Signs, and Markers

5-19: Pavement markings help you just like signs and signals. They are used to warn and direct drivers and to regulate traffic.

5-21: Solid white lines are used for pavement edge lines, shoulder markings, channelizing, transitions and lane control. Crossing a solid white line should be avoided if possible. The solid yellow line on the left edge of the roadway is a guide to drivers that driving to the left of the yellow line is PROHIBITED because the line is marking the left edge of the roadway. This type of yellow line can be found on interstate highways.

5-22: Crossing is PROHIBITED where there is a pavement marking of double solid white lines.




I would like to point out that I was not cited for violating ANY portion of the Texas Drivers Handbook!!! Further, single solid white lines are strong suggestions, but yellow lines are non-negotiable. That is a BIG difference.

I believe I crossed a single white line in complete accordance with § 545.058 (a)(3,4), with (3,4) providing the precise definitions of two of the seven situations deemed 'necessary' and legal. BUT, I am giving CAREFUL consideration to the wise counsel provided by hrt4me.

I still have time...

Link Posted: 9/25/2005 11:47:24 AM EDT
Fight it. What you did was not a violation (in my jurisdiction). FWIW.
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 12:34:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/25/2005 12:35:12 PM EDT by Boz]
First I think you should fight it.

Second this is what happened to me earlier this week. I was travailing in traffic waiting to get to the off ramp staying on the left hand side of the white line. A van 4 cars ahead of me is now turning off and is hit by some one who is using the shoulder to get to the accident, uumm I meant off ramp faster.

Who knows the police officer may have just worked on incident earlier that day with the same circumstances and thought he would write you a ticket so that there might be less chance that you might case an incident yourself (not that you would)

This is almost like the topic a while back (the left lane is for passing only) my .02, I will say no more.
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 12:58:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Boz:
First I think you should fight it.

Second this is what happened to me earlier this week. I was travailing in traffic waiting to get to the off ramp staying on the left hand side of the white line. A van 4 cars ahead of me is now turning off and is hit by some one who is using the shoulder to get to the accident, uumm I meant off ramp faster.

Who knows the police officer may have just worked on incident earlier that day with the same circumstances and thought he would write you a ticket so that there might be less chance that you might case an incident yourself (not that you would)

This is almost like the topic a while back (the left lane is for passing only) my .02, I will say no more.



According to § 545.058 (b) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the left of the main traveled portion of a divided or limited-access or controlled-access highway if that operation may be done safely, but only:
(1) to slow or stop when the vehicle is disabled and traffic or other circumstances prohibit the safe movement of the vehicle to the shoulder to the right of the main traveled portion of the roadway;
(2) as permitted or required by an official traffic-control device; or
(3) to avoid a collision.

In the scenario you have described, the driver of the vehicle that struck the van ahead of you was at fault because he was not in compliance with ANY of the three portions of the statute that addresses driving on the LEFT shoulder, paragraph (b). I was on the RIGHT shoulder, and as such, I am subject to paragraph (a).
Link Posted: 9/25/2005 3:08:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/25/2005 3:31:24 PM EDT by Boz]
Originally Posted By DPeacher:
While driving into work on Thursday, traffic was backed up for the stop light at the intersection where my office building is located. To enter the office park, one must make a right turn at the light. The right turn lane is a continuation of the improved shoulder of the road. I reduced my speed to below 20 mph as I approached the slowing and stopped traffic, signaled, and moved right, from the main portion of the highway onto the improved shoulder where I cautiously passed the stopped traffic and approached the intersection.

According to § 545.058 (b) An operator may drive on an improved shoulder to the left of the main traveled portion of a divided or limited-access or controlled-access highway if that operation may be done safely


I'm lost he was going right and this law § 545.058 (b) is talking about the left shoulder????

Me personally I would fight it. (Fight the man)

Also because I have worked in EMS and backup 911 for more than 3 years I have seen first hand what impatience can do, and have personally puled many people out on backboards/c-color, and transported them to a trauma center from "accidents" that could have bin avoided.

That is why I said you never know what kind of call the police officer just got finished working.

This discussion can go on forever, you are never going to pleas everyone.

But at the same time we all must make decisions. Right or wrong they are our own decisions.

I am not saying that DPeacher: was driving recklessly. From what he stated it seams the opposite.

But (hypothetically) what if some one witnessed this police officer pull you over and ticket you. Now knowing that they to may be ticketed for doing the same, they, say a week later while in a hurry decide not to pull to the right and exit, or get into the turn lane early. By them doing so saves and accident from happening and saves a mother of father from putting there child in the cold ground because they did not see the person who was driving on the shoulder and slammed into them.

Look at it from the bright side. This incident could actually have saved someones life!

Link Posted: 9/25/2005 5:25:50 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/25/2005 5:31:07 PM EDT by DPeacher]
Boz

§ 545.058 (a) deals with driving on the improved shoulder on the RIGHT side of the road. This section provides 7 instances when it IS legal to do so. This section deals with MY situation.

§ 545.058 (b) deals with driving on the improved shoulder on the LEFT side of the road. This section provides 3 instances when it is legal to do so. This section deals with YOUR example, if I am reading it correctly.

§ 545.058 (c) specifies that sections (a) & (b) do NOT apply to emergency vehicles responding to a call, a police patrol, or a bicycle.


The complete verbage of § 545.058 is contained in my first post.
Link Posted: 9/26/2005 6:28:47 AM EDT
I am talking about the right side of the road.

I am no lawyer, but from what the law stated It looks like you should take it to court, if that is what you feel you should do.

As for the other things that I said, I was just giving forensics's, scenarios, first hand account of what I have seen. Food for thought if you will.

Good luck in whatever you decide to do!
Link Posted: 9/26/2005 6:30:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By DPeacher:




Shut the hell up and go to court already. You're starting to sound like ETH without the bible references.

Link Posted: 9/26/2005 8:13:10 AM EDT
Interesting juxtaposition to this thread www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=8&f=8&t=210988
Link Posted: 9/26/2005 11:44:21 AM EDT
Wow, I'm just glad the cop went home ok after shooting your dog.

Oh wait wrong thread.

Next time ask if you can armwrestle the guy to see if he'll write the ticket or a warning.
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