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Thread: Littering While Driving Question

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Littering While Driving Question

    Hi guys,

    I have a friend who rides with me while I drive. On occasion he has the terrible habit of opening his window and throwing a small piece of garbage (hair, a piece of lint, a gum wrapper, et cetera) out the car. I'm afraid I'll get slapped with the $1000 max. penalty here in California, but am not sure who ultimately gets the ticket. Is it me or him?

    I understand this pertains to V.C. Section 42001.7. Here's an easy website to navigate with:

    http://law.onecle.com/california/vehicle/42001.7.html

    Any advice would be appreciated.


    Thanks,

    Dudemar

  2. #2
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    *Mammoth Killer*
    Robocop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    From what I understand this is not considered a moving violation and as such any person in the vehicle can receive the citation. We have traffic citations that are issued to the driver only and for other violations such as seatbelt violations or criminal littering we can issue a citation to any passenger within a vehicle. I assume it would be easy for an officer who witnessed an act of littering to determine if it were the driver or passenger so you should be safe regardless.

    I know the laws here however California has a much larger, and more complicated, system yet I can not see how you could be charged with the actions of a driver in this case regardless of the area.

    One exception here where the driver can be charged with the actions of the passenger would be the loud noise ordinance. As the operator of a vehicle it is the responsibility of the driver to control his volume. he may hate the loud music however if the driver allows the passenger to blast the music loud enough to be heard from 50 feet it will be the driver who pays the 250 dollar fine.....crazy fine however we write them all the time.
    Is that an ARC in your pocket or are you just small like that?

  3. #3
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    Why not just tell him not to ??

    If one of my passengers threw rubbish out the window I'd stop and make them go back and pick it up. If they didn't, they would be walking home.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* AlexGT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    +1

    It's YOUR car, YOU make the rules. Just tell him your concerns about the ticket or straight up tell him "Don't be a pig!" (J/K) and maybe install one of those litter bags in the passenger side.

    AlexGT

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* greenlight's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Robocop View Post
    One exception here where the driver can be charged with the actions of the passenger would be the loud noise ordinance. As the operator of a vehicle it is the responsibility of the driver to control his volume. he may hate the loud music however if the driver allows the passenger to blast the music loud enough to be heard from 50 feet it will be the driver who pays the 250 dollar fine.....crazy fine however we write them all the time.
    Can you transfer to my local PD? I'm getting so tired of the blasting stereos. Whenever I call to complain, the responding officer doesn't ever fine the kids, they just tell them to turn it off (and they just move to another location to make the same noise).

    As for the litter, I don't think hair counts. I've been known to toss an apple core into the brush. Even though they are bio-degradable, another witness to this act wouldn't know what the object was, so I suspect that I would be liable...

    How about putting a trash bag on his side for him to use?

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* Thujone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    What really really upsets me is cig butts. Especially while riding on my motorcycle. I have been hit by one in the past. Not OK. Not at all.
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    00100000011010010111001100100000011101000110100001 11001001100101011000010111010001100101011011100110 1001011011100110011100101110


  7. #7
    *Retired* The_LED_Museum's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    In some states, throwing a lighted cigerette stub out of a car window can result in a rather hefty fine for the crime of "depositing burning material on the roadway".
    As I understand, the penalty for this act is significantly more expensive than for the act of littering with nonburning garbage (used tissue, candy wrappers, etc.) in the same manner.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    Quote Originally Posted by The_LED_Museum View Post
    In some states, throwing a lighted cigerette stub out of a car window can result in a rather hefty fine for the crime of "depositing burning material on the roadway".
    Many years ago, I watched somebody throw a lit cigarette butt out of their car window. It landed in a pile of mulch in my neighbors/landlords yard. He wasn't home at the time. It took maybe 45 minutes to an hour for that butt to start the mulch smoking. I filled a bucket with water and put the fire out, however if we would not have been home either, my guess is that, the mulch would have ignited and the tree which was next to his house would have become a lit torch failing who knows where. Possibly into his house.

    People need to pay attention and understand they are actually throwing a flame out their window.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    I'm going to put a plastic baggie on the passenger side, as well as putting a hefty portion of my foot up his @$$.

    Here's the Paul Buzzo Act for littering a cigarette (in CA):

    http://law.onecle.com/california/vehicle/23111.html

    Thanks for the advice guys! Any more input is fine by me.
    Last edited by dudemar; 08-05-2008 at 02:30 PM.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* NA8's Avatar
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    Default Re: Littering While Driving Question

    When I was a kid there was a lot of litter on the roads. We went through a period where it got a lot better, but recently I've noticed a LOT more litter on the side of the roads. Not a good sign.

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