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Do You Toot?
Old 04-09-2016, 05:29 PM   #1
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Do You Toot?

your horn , that is, like if somebody is dreaming or texting when the light turns green and nothing happens after a reasonable time.......Beware! DW got a ticket for tooting; she claims she was not TOOOTING, just a little toot to nudge the guy ahead. Wrong place, wrong time.

what happens now........if you go to court and your honor doesn't buy your story is the fine more than if you had just paid up and not contested it?
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Do You Toot?
Old 04-09-2016, 05:46 PM   #2
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I have never heard of a judge giving you a stiffer fine for contesting. I would fight it for sure as long as I have time to do it. It is definitely more inconvenient, but the officer most likely won't even show up for it anyway. I pleaded not guilty once for a fare evasion charge (Some mishap with a Caltrain clipper card. I bought the card but didn't know I couldn't give the card to the conductor to pay with the card like a credit card once boarded.). When I went to the hearing, the judge said he could reduce my fine which he offered to almost everyone who was there for their traffic tickets (I can't remember by how much) and most people said sure, but I still said no and I still pleaded not guilty. When I went back for the trial , the officer/conductor didn't show, so I won automatically. A lot of other people who were there for their traffic tickets got off the same way that day (their officers didn't show up.) It was a pain though. I had to keep checking for the trial date online for weeks, and it would have been very difficult to reschedule the date if I had some other plans.

This was is California. Maybe things work differently in other states.


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Old 04-09-2016, 05:48 PM   #3
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I give a quick toot just to let them know that the light turned green in case their attention was wandering. I don't want to be sitting there and get rear ended by someone coming up behind me who is more focused on the green light then the cars stopped at the green light.

I would take my chances in court if it was a quick toot. If she laid on the horn then that might be a different story.

Quote:
....Now, say you're stopped at a red light behind another vehicle. The light turns green, but the person in front of you is not paying attention and remains stopped, and you'd like to politely remind him or her to get a move on. Since the safety imperative is less obvious here, can you honk?

This gave Peterson some pause. On the one hand, not accelerating at a green light could create a hazard for vehicles in the rear, he said, “because other people have the expectation that traffic will begin to move when the light turns green.” However, the person behind the distracted driver is more likely honking to chastise the other motorist than out of concern for safety. But in this case, since a net safety gain is a byproduct of the chastisement, honking probably is legal.
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Old 04-09-2016, 05:54 PM   #4
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I'll wait a reasonable amount of time and then toot as softly as I can. I've been distracted and appreciated the wake-up when I was on the other side, but not the immediate blast when my reaction was just a bit slow, or I wanted to make sure someone coming up to the light cross-wise was really going to stop.

Last time I laid on the horn was a busy road crossing where our path only got about 3-4 cars through even if everyone paid attention, and then a long wait. We had already crept up for 2 cycles, and when the light changed, I could see that the driver in front was still looking at her phone, and I did not want to be caught for another 2-3 minutes or whatever that long cycle was. We both pulled into Trader Joe's after the intersection and I wasn't sure if there'd be a confrontation. I wasn't going to start it but I wasn't going to back down either. Fortunately we parked in different areas and didn't meet.
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Old 04-09-2016, 05:57 PM   #5
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I'd be curious to see what the actual charge on the ticket is. Honking your horn isn't against the law anywhere I've ever lived. If it was, why do they put horns on cars? Was the person she honked at the cop?

Going to court has always resulted in either a reduced charge, or usually, a dropped charge. I'd go, at least make the cop look like the a$$hat* he was.

Edit: I found this on the web, just as an example. But it's definitely the argument I would use in court.

Quote:
On the one hand, not accelerating at a green light could create a hazard for vehicles in the rear, he said, “because other people have the expectation that traffic will begin to move when the light turns green.” However, the person behind the distracted driver is more likely honking to chastise the other motorist than out of concern for safety. But in this case, since a net safety gain is a byproduct of the chastisement, honking probably is legal.
* Attribution to Walt34
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Old 04-09-2016, 06:12 PM   #6
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Funny I tooted twice today, two separate occasions, the first person stopped at an intersection daydreaming. I tooted and there was a local LEO at the intersection. No problems.

Second people stopped at an intersection to talk. I saw the driver put it in park! She sat there kinda turned to the passenger talking. Acted annoyed as I tooted my expectations; if you're on the drivable part of the road you should be driving not talking or playing canasta.

Heck yeah I'd fight it, why is there a horn if not to wake up the folks who forgot they're driving. Happens all too frequently around here. Without a few toots I doubt some of these folks would likely get home.
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Old 04-09-2016, 09:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harley View Post
I'd be curious to see what the actual charge on the ticket is. Honking your horn isn't against the law anywhere I've ever lived. If it was, why do they put horns on cars? Was the person she honked at the cop?

Going to court has always resulted in either a reduced charge, or usually, a dropped charge. I'd go, at least make the cop look like the a$$hat* he was.

Edit: I found this on the web, just as an example. But it's definitely the argument I would use in court.

* Attribution to Walt34
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Old 04-09-2016, 10:13 PM   #8
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People sitting at lights are usually on their cell phones these days. I will Honk (more than a toot) if they keep sitting there looking down when the light turns green.
I used to be so reluctant to use my horn, but I have sat through green lights because the jerk up ahead didn't move.

Why did the police officer not give the cell phone user a ticket ?

I seriously looked at getting a much louder horn, but they are pretty expensive and then there is the hassle of installing it.
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Old 04-09-2016, 11:03 PM   #9
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I clicked on this thread cause I though it was about eating beans or something similar.

heh heh heh - let em eat bacon.
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Old 04-09-2016, 11:31 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by unclemick View Post
I clicked on this thread cause I though it was about eating beans or something similar.

heh heh heh - let em eat bacon.
Made my day there, unclemick

Thanks to all for the replies. Sounds like most think it won't cost more
to fight it. I'll have to check that out again.......I had the impression that
it would cost multiples of the standard fine to fight it. If not, maybe it's
worth doing just for the experience. Got the feeling tho that a LEO who
gives a ticket for a toot is likely not too busy to go to court.
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:04 AM   #11
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I generally try to avoid doing it. But there's one light that I'm oftentimes queued for at a complex intersection near where we live. It's green every 3-4 minutes for a very short period (10-15 seconds).

I'm all over it if someone ahead of me at that light isn't paying attention.
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:10 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by unclemick View Post
I clicked on this thread cause I though it was about eating beans or something similar.

heh heh heh - let em eat bacon.
+1
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:17 AM   #13
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Is it acceptable to toot at neighbors who are walking the dog?
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:20 AM   #14
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Probably not technically since there is not a imminent danger about which you are trying to get their attention.... but everybody does it. I doubt that an LEO would ticket you for it unless s/he was an a$$hat in a sour mood.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harley View Post
I'd be curious to see what the actual charge on the ticket is. Honking your horn isn't against the law anywhere I've ever lived. If it was, why do they put horns on cars? Was the person she honked at the cop?

Going to court has always resulted in either a reduced charge, or usually, a dropped charge. I'd go, at least make the cop look like the a$$hat* he was.

Edit: I found this on the web, just as an example. But it's definitely the argument I would use in court.

* Attribution to Walt34
I'd buy that argument, but for those who didn't click on the link, the article shows that it is indeed against the law to honk unless it is a safety issue. That's what the horn is for, safety. Not to express anger or as a greeting or anything else.

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Originally Posted by target2019 View Post
Is it acceptable to toot at neighbors who are walking the dog?
Not legally, but I doubt you'd ever be prosecuted. But I hate that myself, because it startles me. I had a neighbor who used to honk every time he drove by and see me running, even if I was on the edge of a road with a steep drop off. I'd be running against traffic so I could see cars coming, but if I hear a horn behind me my reaction to the horn is that there is a danger and my instinct is to step off the road, which would be in a ditch or down an embankment. Finally I told him to stop, and he did. If you really want to greet your neighbor, slow down as you pass and wave.
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:29 AM   #16
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I will usually give a couple of short "beeps" to get the persons attention. If using the horn is against the law then maybe there should be a class action suit against all auto makers for installing equipment in a car that is illegal. The LEO is a "whack-a-mole".

The only reason I would hesitate to use my horn is if the person in the other car is threatening with a gun. Unfortunately that would not be unusual for Florida.

Cheers!
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:31 AM   #17
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Wow - never heard of a ticket for honking your horn!
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:52 AM   #18
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Seems to me the driver parked at a green light on their cellphone or day dreaming should be the one receiving a ticket. Never heard of blowing ones horn at a traffic offender causing a ticket.
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:09 AM   #19
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Many cities have noise ordinance laws. I'm guessing this ticket wasn't issued in NYC - it's often too noisy to even hear a car horn. Still, looks like the LEO might have been having a bad day. I'd go to court.

The horn on DW's car is so tinny and canned it's almost embarrassing to use. Where we lived in Caracas it is quite common to install aftermarket horns that are occasionally musical but mostly loud and obnoxious, and the horns begin their blasting even before traffic lights turn green.
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:12 AM   #20
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Wow - never heard of a ticket for honking your horn!
Yes, technically the horn is there for imminent safety problems only, at least in
CA. Will have to back to the drivers handbook to see if that is pointed out.
Posted for general education in case it applies in your state.

Seems like this is one of those things w/ black and white and gray areas.
Another (one of my pet peeves) is that you aren't supposed to drive across
a crosswalk when a pedestrian is in it.....even if they are on the other side
of a road and moseying along at a leisurely pace. I can understand if they're
on your side of the road but if every driver followed the letter of the law, traffic would be backed up. Then there are the drivers who cram into an intersection when the light turns yellow and their lane is blocked so the intersection is then blocked and nobody can go anywhere including the drivers who now have the green light............
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