California Vehicle Code 21461a VC requires motorists to obey official traffic signs. This includes both permanent traffic lights and signals as well as temporary ones erected at work zones. Drivers who disobey traffic signals risk getting cited for an infraction, carrying fines and possibly DMV points.
The full text of the statute reads as follows:
21461a VC It is unlawful for a driver of a vehicle to fail to obey a sign or signal defined as regulatory in the federal Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, or a Department of Transportation approved supplement to that manual of a regulatory nature erected or maintained to enhance traffic safety and operations or to indicate and carry out the provisions of this code or a local traffic ordinance or resolution adopted pursuant to a local traffic ordinance, or to fail to obey a device erected or maintained by lawful authority of a public body or official.
California Vehicle Code 21461a VC is the California law that prohibits drivers of motor vehicles from disobeying traffic signs and signals. Traffic violations are typically infractions, which carry no jail and up to a few hundred dollars in fines.1 Ten common traffic infractions include:
- Running a stop sign
- Making an unsafe lane change
- Driving while using a cell phone
- Passing on the right in an unsafe manner
- Not wearing a seat belt
- Failing to yield
- Failing to signal
- Driving without headlights
In addition to carrying fines, many traffic violations cause points to be added to the motorist’s driver’s license. Drivers who accumulate four points in 12 months are deemed negligent operators and will have their license suspended by the California DMV. (But drivers are entitled to a hearing at the DMV where they can contest the suspension.)
- up to 6 months in county jail, and/or
- a fine of up to $1,000
For additional help, please contact the California auto accident attorneys at Shouse Law Group.
- California Vehicle Code 21461 VC – Driver’s Duty to Obey Regulatory Traffic Signs and Signals. Gillespie v. Los Angeles (Cal., 1950), 36 Cal. 2d 553, 225 P.2d 522.
- 12810 VC.
- 40508 VC.