Vehicle Code 21453 CVC - Running a Red Light
If you’ve recently received a letter in the mail letting you know that you’ve received a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation, it’s understandable to want to know what it means and how to deal with it. Below, we cover all of the must-know details that you’ll want to know, including:
- What Vehicle Code 21453 CVC is
- What it means to have violated it
- What you can do about the violation
- Other possible Vehicle Code violation connections
- How to avoid being cited with a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation
What is Vehicle Code 21453 CVC?
There’s a lot of possibility with this particular kind of ticket. The best starting point for clarity is going to be the California legislation, which states: “a driver facing a red traffic signal shall stop before entering the intersection, crosswalk, or at the marked line. Unless there is a sign prohibiting a turn, a driver must first stop before turning right on a red light or left from a one-way street onto a one-way street.”. In simpler words, it means that a driver must come to a complete stop when facing a red traffic signal/light. In some cases, they’ll be allowed to complete a turn if their way is clear, but they must come to a stop first.
What does it mean to have violated Vehicle Code 21453 CVC?
It sounds simple enough and relatively straightforward when you want to understand what it means. But it’s always best to make this a very real example so that you can get a feel for what it looks like and its exceptions! Our fictional driver, Marcie, will help with this.
In the first example, Marcie comes up to a red stoplight, but after glancing around and seeing she is alone, she decides to complete the turn/drive ahead even though she hasn’t come to a full stop. In this case, she’s guilty of a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation because she failed to stop completely.
Secondly, Marcie comes to a full stop at a circular red light. She is going straight ahead, so after taking a look around for oncoming traffic, she drives through the intersection and continues on her way. In this case, she’s guilty of a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation because California drivers can only turn right on a circular red light signal, not go straight ahead.
In our third example, Marcie is on a one-way street and stops at a red circular light. She wants to turn left onto a classic two-way street. She completes the turn while the light is still red. In this example, she’s violated Vehicle Code 21453 CVC because she can only turn left on a circular red light if the street she is turning onto is a one-way street as well.
Lastly, Marcie comes to a stop in the turning lane that has a steady red arrow. She’s in a rush, so she turns anyway. This counts as a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation because she is not allowed to turn left on a steady red arrow even if the coast is clear.
There are exceptions to turning on a red light signal, of course. First and foremost, Marcie is not allowed to turn right or left, even if she does so following the law, in an intersection where there is a sign clearly noting that it is illegal. Even if she followed the law perfectly according to stopping, etc., she’d still be guilty of a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation because she isn’t allowed to make the turn, as indicated by the sign.
An exception to any of these things will be if she is in a situation where she is forced to make the turn in order to avoid an accident. For example, an oncoming car that has lost control or one behind her that is going to crash into her if she remains where she is. In either of these situations, she’d be exempt from the isolation because she completed the turn/ran the right light only to make sure she was not involved in an accident. This would also be the case if there was an emergency vehicle behind her that was otherwise unable to get past her and continue to where it is going.
In the case of the ticket being issued by a traffic camera, Marcie would also be exempt from the fine if she could prove that she was not the one driving her vehicle at the time of the ticket being issued.
What can I do about this violation?
This violation may seem minor, but it is a serious one as far as its appearance on your driving record. The penalty for any of these kinds of violations would be a fine of either $100 (for running a red light), or $35 (for turning on a signal incorrectly/illegally) and also having 1 DMV point added to their driving record.
When you receive your citation in the mail, you will be given a court date, and you will also have a note on it for eligibility for traffic school. You can choose to pay the fine and attend an accredited institution to mask the point on your record. We’ll discuss this more in-depth below.
Whatever you decide as being right for you, the best thing to do is to plead guilty at your court hearing. If you are innocent or qualify for one of the exceptions, you can plead your case in court with the support of an attorney for the best results.
Other possible Vehicle Code violation connections
In some cases, there are similar violations that can be connected to this particular code. They can be added to or used instead of a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation. In this case, however, there are multiple reasons for missing a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC citation, so they would all be covered under this same law.
However, a peace office or traffic camera that issues you the citation can decide to add other offenses if they are deemed necessary or appropriate when issuing the ticket for the Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation. The court will then use its discretion to determine if they’ll be added to your ticket or not.
Is this ticket eligible for traffic school?
As mentioned above, your citation letter in the mail should tell you whether or not you qualify to attend an accredited traffic school, like MM TRAFFIC SCHOOL, to mask the DMV point that would otherwise be added to your record. Receiving a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC is considered a moving citation, so you can attend a traffic school when receiving a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation. Of course, you won’t qualify if you’ve attended it in the past 18 months, received a serious violation (of more than 2 DMV points), or committed it in a commercial vehicle.
While traffic school is not required for you to accept the ticket, there are many advantages to consider. Firstly, MM TRAFFIC SCHOOL focuses on offering fun, amusing, and educational classes to help drivers learn how to address their driving techniques and skills. The better a class is, as far as entertainment, the more likely you are to remember the material — and become a better driver because of it. This is not going to be a dry lecture for 40 million hours.
Driving school also helps you to mask the point from your record. This can help if you were to receive a ticket in the foreseeable future (1-2) years, as too many points on your record can result in your losing your license temporarily. It also helps you to keep your insurance premiums low since this does show up when you are looking at changing your policy, etc.
If you have any questions on MM TRAFFIC SCHOOL or traffic school as a reasonable approach when receiving a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation, please contact us, and we’ll be happy to give you more detail on your citation, our program, and anything else that you want to know! Alternatively, you can also contact the court that issued you the ticket since they’ll be more equipped to help you with your specific case.
How can I avoid a citation for a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation?
No matter what your reason is for wanting to avoid a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation, avoidance is always the best decision! After all, a violation-free driver is a safe driver. And vice versa. When you are specifically looking at avoiding a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation, consider these tips!
Firstly, always make sure that you come to a complete stop at the line/crosswalk on the pavement at a red light. These are not to be treated as yield signs, and you must come to a complete stop every time. The best way to make sure that you don’t “cut it too short” is to do the stop you learned when learning how to drive. When you stop at the line, look left, right, and left again. This is also often referred to as a “3-second-stop” since it often takes 3 seconds and 3 turns to do properly. While you may get a frustrated driver toot angrily at you from behind, it’s much better than receiving a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation!
Secondly, make sure that you are well aware of the laws that surround when you can turn on a red light and when you can’t. They often get confusing in real life when you are in the middle of rush hour, heavy traffic, etc. Amped-up anxiety or frustration can make us think illogically and complete a turn that we shouldn’t.
Thirdly, always be safe rather than sorry. If you’re not able to remember if you can, or should, complete the turn on a red light, don’t do it. Just wait until the light cycles through to green again and continue on your way. You will never break the law by not turning when you technically can, after all. The only exception to this would be in a situation where an emergency vehicle is behind you, and you are blocking the way, of course! Please remember: Receiving a Vehicle Code 21453 CVC violation implies that you are intentionally running a red light or turning right/left when you shouldn’t. If you aren’t acting under your own will, the violation won’t apply!