I got a ticket for express lane infraction. Will my defense work? Roadshow

Q: On weekends, when the express lanes are open to all drivers, can you cross the double white line in and out of those lanes?

Tom Evans, San Ramon

A: No. It is unlawful to cross double lines at any time. The fine for doing so is $300.

Q: What’s the rationale for enforcing the do-not-cross-the-double-white-lines during non-express lane times, when it’s safe to do so and while signaling a lane change? It really seems like a bad rule, even unsafe at times.

Peter Ross, San Jose

A: To allow it in some instances but not others would be confusing, especially on freeways, and could hamper the flow of traffic when it does confuse some drivers. I doubt the CHP issues a lot of tickets for this, but they can. State law prohibits crossing double white lanes on all roads at all times.

Q: And does the CHP actually enforce the rule on weekends and after 8 p.m.?

Peter Ross

A: Yes. Read the next reader’s story for proof.

Q: I saw your response that crossing a double white line is a $300 fine. I just got ticketed for the same. Is there any defense if it was just as it was splitting into a double white?

It was on a Saturday morning on Interstate  680 near the Pleasanton BART station. The motorcycle cop wasn’t unpleasant, but let’s just say he wasn’t friendly about it, either.

Frank Petracek, Dublin

A: You can fight your ticket in court and may get a sympathetic judge, but I don’t think your chances are good.

Q: The Interstate 880 lane from Oakland to Milpitas is now an express lane, or so the signs say. What difference does it make if I use a transponder or just let them read my license plate and send me a bill?

And don’t for a moment think that the double white lines are stopping anyone.


A: You must have FasTrak to use the express lanes. If not, a camera will read your license plate and it will cost the state extra bucks to process and track you down.

Q: My granddaughter is about to take her driving test. She will be using her family car, which has a backup camera and other bells and whistles that warn when the car is too close to obstacles. Will these driving aids be allowed when she’s taking the test?

Laurie Mobilio, Morgan Hill

A: No. She can use the car, but not the bells and whistles. A vehicle’s backup cameras and self-parking features cannot be used on a driving test. The purpose of the test is to ensure her ability to drive, with or without the additional technology.

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Author: Gary Richards