If you’ve been out and about lately, you’ve noticed there is still quite a big difference on the roads, especially during rush hour. But with fewer cars, do all the same rules apply on the road?
Also, fewer cars on the road mean fewer people are commuting. That has many thinking that speed limits on the freeways may not be enforced right now. And what about construction zones -- do you still have to slow down in them?
We asked our expert, California Highway Patrol Officer Mark Latulippe, in “Ask a CHP Officer” to get some answers for you.
Can I still call 511 if I need roadside assistance? Will someone come and help?
Answer: “Yes, absolutely. If you are broken down on the road we encourage you to get a phone call out to us at 511. If you are blocking the road or something like that you can call 911. That’s an emergency, that’s okay,” explained Officer Mark Latulippe. He added the same amount of officers are out patrolling, even in a pandemic, so help will be on the way.
Can my ticket double in price if I’m speeding in a construction zone?
Answer: ”So in terms of fines doubling in construction zones, it depends on the construction zone," Latulippe said. "If it’s a temporary construction zone that goes up during the day and maybe it closes off at night. And maybe, there’s signs posted about doubling the fine, during construction, that’s absolutely valid and you could have that fine doubled."
So, yes, you definitely want to be extra careful in construction zones and also be mindful of the speed limit.
Speeds have been decreased for quite a while along I-5 because of the lane widening project near Encinitas. That’s a huge construction project that will in all take years to complete, and sometimes construction crews aren’t on site. So are fines always double in that area?
Answer: “There are construction zones that are ongoing like on the I-5 freeway. That zone, because the speed limit has been changed and there’s a mandate to the speed limit change, and the citations that are being issued; those can be doubled 24 hours a day.”
Those were some great reminders ahead of the Labor Day Holiday weekend. Stay safe, everyone!