Archive for the ‘CHP’ Category

CHP highlights changes to state’s traffic safety laws starting Jan. 1

Thursday, December 30th, 2021

Onnew law strengthens penalties for sideshow convictions

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, CHP

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – As we head into the new year, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) is educating the public on traffic safety laws that were passed during this year’s legislative season and signed by Governor Gavin Newsom.  The laws take effect January 1, 2022, unless otherwise noted.

Sideshow Definition and Penalties (Assembly Bill (AB) 3, Fong):  This new law strengthens penalties for those convicted of exhibition of speed if the violation occurred as part of a sideshow.

Beginning July 1, 2025, a court will be permitted to suspend a person’s driver’s license between 90 days and six months if the person is convicted of exhibition of speed and if the violation occurred as part of a “sideshow.”  Section 23109(c) of the California Vehicle Code (CVC) (exhibition of speed) will define sideshow as an event in which two or more persons block or impede traffic on a highway for the purpose of performing motor vehicle stunts, motor vehicle speed contests, motor vehicle exhibitions of speed, or reckless driving for spectators.

The courts will be required to consider a defendant’s medical, personal, or family hardship that requires a person to have a driver’s license before determining whether to suspend a person’s driver’s license.

Equestrian Safety Gear (AB 974, L. Rivas):  Requires a person under the age of 18 to wear a properly fitted and fastened helmet when riding an equestrian animal, such as a horse, mule, or donkey on a paved highway.  This bill also requires all riders or their equines to wear reflective gear or a lamp when riding after sundown.

A person riding an equestrian animal in a parade or festival, or crossing a paved highway from an unpaved highway, is exempt from all helmet, lighting, or reflective gear requirements.

Tribal Emergency Vehicles (AB 798, Ramos):  This bill provides that any vehicle owned or operated by a federally recognized Indian tribe is considered an authorized emergency vehicle as defined by Section 165 CVC when responding to an emergency, fire, ambulance, or lifesaving calls.

Class C Drivers Allowed to Tow Trailer (Senate Bill (SB) 287, Grove):  Effective January 1, 2027, drivers with a class C driver’s license may operate a vehicle towing a trailer between 10,001 pounds and 15,000 pounds gross vehicle weight rating, or gross vehicle weight with a fifth-wheel and kingpin or bed mounted gooseneck connection, provided that the trailer is used exclusively for recreational purposes for the transportation of property, living space, or both.

The driver will be required to pass a specialized written examination demonstrating the knowledge of the CVC and other safety aspects relating to the towing of recreational vehicles on the highway and possess an endorsement on their class C driver’s license.

Currently, this exemption is in place for drivers towing a fifth-wheel travel trailer provided the driver passes a specialized written exam and obtains a recreational trailer endorsement.

As a reminder, the following law took effect on July 1, 2021:

License Points for Distracted Driving (AB 47, Daly; 2019):  Using a handheld cell phone while driving is currently punishable by a fine.  As of July 1, 2021, violating the hands-free law for a second time within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense will result in a point being added to a driver’s record.  This applies to the violations of talking or texting while driving (except for hands-free use) and to any use of these devices while driving by a person under 18 years of age.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

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CHP, allied agencies combine efforts for New Year’s weekend Maximum Enforcement Period

Wednesday, December 29th, 2021

Starting 6:01 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 31, 2021, through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 2

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, California Highway Patrol

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The ushering in of a new year brings with it the anticipation of a fresh start, positive changes, and healthy resolutions.  What it should not bring are headlines of tragedies caused by drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

To encourage safe travel for those who are out on the road, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) will conduct a Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP) starting at 6:01 p.m. on Friday, December 31, 2021, through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, January 2, 2022.

“Ringing in the new year should be an exciting time filled with celebration and hope,” CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray said.  “To help keep the roadways safe through the holiday and beyond, our officers will be out in force to deter, detect, and remove impaired drivers.” 

During the previous New Year’s Day MEP, 56 people were killed in crashes in California.  Sadly, half of the vehicle occupants killed in the crashes were not wearing a seat belt.  During that same 78-hour MEP, CHP officers made 709 arrests for driving under the influence throughout the state.

To help bolster this year’s holiday traffic safety effort across state lines, the CHP will again partner with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and the Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota state patrols in a Western States Traffic Safety Coalition for the “Drive High, Get a DUI,” campaign.  With the focus of the New Year’s operation to identify and remove impaired drivers from the road, the CHP will have all available personnel on patrol, including Drug Recognition Evaluators to conduct evaluations of suspected impaired drivers.

With 362 arrests for DUI during the 54-hour Christmas Day Maximum Enforcement Period, California Highway Patrol officers averaged a DUI arrest nearly every nine minutes.

For daily MEP updates and other valuable traffic safety-related information, follow @CHP_HQ on Twitter.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

 

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Providing safety on the roads is CHP’s gift to motorists this Christmas

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2021

Maximum Enforcement Period from 6:01 p.m. Friday, Dec. 24 until 11:59 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 26

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, CHP

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Christmas season is upon us and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) is reminding everyone to put safety first and follow the rules of the road while traveling California’s roadways.

According to data from the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System, at least 38 people were killed in crashes in California throughout the Christmas holiday enforcement period last year.  During that 78-hour Maximum Enforcement Period, CHP officers made 573 arrests for driving under the influence.

“The CHP will be out on California’s roadways while the public travels to join friends and family this weekend,” said CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray.  “Our goal is the same as yours, to make certain you arrive safely at your destination.  From our family to yours, we wish you all a safe and happy holiday.”

The CHP will begin its Maximum Enforcement Period at 6:01 p.m. on Friday, December 24, and continue it through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, December 26.  During that time, all available officers will be on the road for enhanced enforcement and to assist any motorists or pedestrians in need of help.

Wherever your holiday travels take you, remember to plan ahead, buckle up, avoid distractions, and never drive while impaired.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

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CHP focuses on eliminating teen distracted driving

Tuesday, November 9th, 2021

Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, California Highway Patrol

Source: NHTSA

Using cell phones, eating or drinking, adjusting a radio, or simply talking with friends are all activities teens engage in every day, but these activities become life-threatening hazards while driving.   Unfortunately, many of these distractions will lead to crashes resulting in an injury or death. 

To address these concerns, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) is partnering with traffic safety organizations promoting safe driving behaviors for teens.  The grant-funded Teen Distracted Drivers campaign consists of an education component that will allow for CHP officers and traffic safety partners to make appearances at schools and community events throughout the state. Distracted driving enforcement operations for this grant began October 1, 2021, and will continue through September 30, 2022.

According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, there are nearly 750,000 licensed teenage drivers in California.  Data from the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System indicated that in 2019 there were nearly 44,000 crashes involving teen drivers between 15 to 19 years of age, including 231 fatal crashes.  Although preliminary figures for 2020 indicated a drop in total crashes involving teen drivers in California, the number of teen driver-involved fatal crashes increased to 258.

“The combination of inattention and inexperience behind the wheel can lead to tragedy,” said CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray.  “This grant will assist our officers in keeping California’s roads safe, while addressing California’s distracted driving crisis among the state’s teens.”

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

 

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CHP gets ‘green light’ for $5.5 million statewide DUI campaign

Thursday, October 28th, 2021

Federal grant funding Impaired Driving Reduction efforts

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, California Highway Patrol

SACRAMENTO, Calif. –  The California Highway Patrol (CHP) and the California Office of Traffic Safety are partnering on a campaign aimed at reducing the number of crashes caused by impaired drivers.  The $5.5 million grant will fund the Impaired Driving Reduction (IDR) education and enforcement campaign, which began October 1, 2021 and continues through September 30, 2022.

In 2019, impaired driving crashes were responsible for 568 deaths and 11,444 injuries within the CHP’s jurisdiction throughout the state.  Each one of these injuries and deaths represents a preventable tragedy and a continued need to focus efforts on reducing impaired driving in California.

“This grant will help support the Department’s mission by strengthening education and enforcement efforts throughout the state,” CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray said.  “As a public safety organization, we will continue to do everything in our power to promote safety for all on California’s roadways.”

In 2020, CHP officers made more than 90,000 violations for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs.  The IDR grant provides the CHP with funding to conduct additional saturation patrols, checkpoints, and traffic safety education efforts throughout California.  These efforts are designed to remove impaired drivers from the roadway and educate the public regarding the dangers of DUI.  Additionally, the CHP will actively participate in California’s Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over public awareness campaign.

The CHP wants to remind the public, “DUI Doesn’t Just Mean Booze.”  Alcohol, cannabis, certain prescription and over-the-counter medications, illegal drugs, or any combination can affect your ability to drive and will result in an arrest if you are under the influence.  Always make good decisions and plan ahead by designating a sober driver, take public transportation, or call a taxi or ride-share.  There is always a better option than getting behind the wheel while impaired.

The public is encouraged to call 9-1-1 if they observe a suspected impaired driver.  Be prepared to provide the dispatcher a location, direction of travel, and vehicle description.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

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CHP secures grant to increase motorcycle safety awareness

Monday, October 11th, 2021

By Jaime Coffee, Information Officer II, California Highway Patrol

SACRAMENTO, Calif. –To help save lives and reduce the risk associated with riding a motorcycle, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) will implement a new, federally funded grant campaign promoting motorcycle safety in California from October 1, 2021, through September 30, 2022.

The goal of the Get Educated and Ride Safe (GEARS) IV grant is to decrease the number of motorcycle-involved crashes and victims through education and enforcement campaigns.  In federal fiscal year (FFY) 2018-19, there was an approximate 10 percent decrease in motorcycle-involved crashes in California, followed by a 20 percent drop the following year based on provisional data.  Even with the decline, there were 6,849 motorcycle-involved crashes resulting in 306 deaths and 6,118 injuries within CHP jurisdiction in FFY 2019-20.

“While the decrease in the number of crashes is encouraging, there is still work to be done,” said CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray.  “The GEARS IV grant will support the Department’s efforts to increase motorcycle safety through education and enforcement.”

During this grant period, the CHP will participate in traffic safety education campaigns, such as “May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.”  These campaigns will promote the use of U.S. Department of Transportation-compliant helmets for all riders and raise motorists’ awareness of sharing the road with motorcyclists.  The CHP will also increase enforcement efforts in areas with a high number of motorcycle-involved crashes, which were a result of speed, improper turning, and driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The mission of the CHP is to provide the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security.

 

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Man in stolen truck from Antioch leads CHP on wrong-way pursuit, arrested Tuesday

Thursday, September 16th, 2021

Stolen Antioch truck heads the wrong way on the eastbound Hillcrest Avenue offramp of Hwy 4 on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021. CHP video screenshot.

By CHP Golden Gate Division Air Operations

Stolen truck on railroad tracks in Pittsburg on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021. CHP video screenshot.

On the morning of September 14 2021, CHP airplane A-31 was returning to the Napa airport, when it’s onboard sensors detected a stolen vehicle in the Antioch area due to a LoJack stolen vehicle recovery system that utilizes GPS to locate users’ vehicles. A-31 began a search of the area, eventually locating the vehicle on city streets. (See video)

When ground units were requested to make an enforcement stop, the truck fled at a high rate of speed. The driver drove wrong way on surface streets and the freeway, entering Hwy 4 at the eastbound Hillcrest Avenue offramp. He exited the freeway on the eastbound onramp at Lone Tree Way, crossed under the overpass and re-entered westbound Hwy 4 in the correct direction. The driver then exited at Loveridge Road in Pittsburg. At one point, the truck became lodged on railroad tracks just north of the Antioch-Pittsburg Hwy aka W. 10th Street.

Driver and occupants flee stolen trucks on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021. CHP video screenshot.

Eventually the occupants fled from the vehicle in a residential neighborhood and A-31 was able to track the driver to a backyard where he was apprehended.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

 

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

 

 

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Fatal Highway 4 multi-vehicle crash in Antioch claims life of Discovery Bay man Friday

Saturday, September 11th, 2021

By CHP – Contra Costa

Friday afternoon at about 1:38 pm, Contra Costa CHP was advised of a four-vehicle crash on Hwy-4 westbound, east of Hillcrest Avenue. Upon emergency personnel and CHP arrival, it was determined that four vehicles were involved. (A black Chevrolet Tahoe, a white Infiniti G37, a grey Toyota Corolla, and a white semi-truck trailer.)

It appears that the driver of the Infiniti drove between the semi-truck and the Chevrolet Tahoe and collided into the side of the Tahoe. The driver of the Tahoe (56-year-old male from Discovery Bay) lost control and veered the Tahoe across all lanes to the right side of the road and crashed into the guard rail. Then subsequently careened off the guard rail and back into the lanes where it was struck by the semi-truck, and then continued across the lanes towards the center divider, where it was then struck by the Toyota Corolla. Tragically the 56-year-old male driver from the Tahoe sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced deceased at the scene. No other drivers from the other vehicles involved were transported to any hospital. The Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office will be handling the release of identity of the deceased male.

Alcohol or drugs are not suspected to be a factor in this collision. This collision is still under investigation. If anyone witnessed it or the events leading up to it and have not yet spoken with CHP, please contact Contra Costa CHP in Martinez, (925) 646-4980.

 

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