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South Turnpike School Zone Traffic Laws
updated: Mar 10, 2014, 4:00 PM

By Edhat Subscriber

What is the experience of drivers on South Turnpike. When does law enforcement expect you to drive 25mph versus 40mph?

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 501651P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 04:14 PM

On South Turnpike, the difference between going 25 and going 40 to the freeway or to Hollister will be what? 5 seconds, being generous? Slow down.

 

 COMMENT 501652 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 04:15 PM

When Children are present and/or the lights are flashing.

 

 COMMENT 501656 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 04:25 PM

It's hard to know for sure what someone else expects but in a School Zone it is safe to assume that law enforcement will be expecting drivers to be minding the Speed Limit.

Of course if it means that much to you to spend as little time along that stretch as you can stand then you get to choose how fast you have to go... just don't expect to stiff the piper every time.

 

 COMMENT 501657 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 04:28 PM

The question could be better worded if it didn't refer to law enforcement. What speed is sensible? Hopefully your top priority is safety and not the risk of a ticket.

 

 COMMENT 501667P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 04:52 PM

I have no problem with driving 25 mph. Slow down and enjoy living in SB.

 

 COMMENT 501670 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:03 PM

Doesn't the sign say -

SCHOOL

25

WHEN CHILDREN ARE PRESENT

or something like this? I have no issues following the laws of the posted signs. Just slow down!

 

 COMMENT 501674 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:21 PM

OP here. I'm fine going 25mph, but on either side of the 25mph signs "when children are present" there are 40mph signs. I'm just wondering exactly at what times 40 is ok? Is it only ok before or after school hours (and what are those?). Or is it literally when children are nowhere in sight (no matter what the time)? It's just a little confusing. I'm not looking to speed, so please calm yourselves. Just wanted to know so I can drive safely and within the speedlimit depending on the conditions and hour.

 

 COMMENT 501677 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:34 PM

What are you confused about? "When children are present" is about as self-explanatory as it can be.

And no, it's not restricted to school hours. Kids are on and around school campuses at all sorts of times when school is not in session for all sorts of extra-curricular activities, practices for sports/drama/music/etc., before and after-school activities, to attend games/dances/events, to use the fields, basketball hoops and other equipment, for summer camps, etc.

In other words, drive slow when you're near school because you never know when kids will be around, and if they are, the speed limit is 25 MPH, maximum.

 

 COMMENT 501680P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:46 PM

I've wondered about those signs on Foothill/Cathedral Oaks, when they are combined with yellow flasher lights that are NOT lit.

The question is can I drive over 25 when no children are present and the lights aren't on? I understand the OP's question.

I also understand not wanting to ask in public, here on Edhat! Don't! Refer to DMV driver's handbook, which my ancient computer is trying to load while logged on here (ain't gonna happen):

http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/cdl_htm/toc.htm

 

 COMMENT 501683 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:49 PM

40 mph on any side street? Slow down or stay home. I'll choose pedestrian and cyclast safety over your need to speed to your destination. You're a local hazard.

 

 COMMENT 501685P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:54 PM

It's not so simple. Yes, I drive at 25 or under around schools, especially on Foothill between Turnpike and Patterson.
I hope "senior center" still or also applies to Goleta community Center. The quote won't fit in one post; review it if you need to.

V C Section 22358.4 Decrease of Local Limits Near Schools or Senior Centers

22358.4. (a) (1) Whenever a local authority determines upon the basis of an engineering and traffic survey that the prima facie speed limit of 25 miles per hour established by paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 22352 is more than is reasonable or safe, the local authority may, by ordinance or resolution, determine and declare a prima facie speed limit of 20 or 15 miles per hour, whichever is justified as the appropriate speed limit by that survey.

(2) An ordinance or resolution adopted under paragraph (1) shall not be effective until appropriate signs giving notice of the speed limit are erected upon the highway and, in the case of a state highway, until the ordinance is approved by the Department of Transportation and the appropriate signs are erected upon the highway.

(b) (1) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) or any other provision of law, a local authority may, by ordinance or resolution, determine and declare prima facie speed limits as follows:

(A) A 15 miles per hour prima facie limit in a residence district, on a highway with a posted speed limit of 30 miles per hour or slower, when approaching, at a distance of less than 500 feet from, or passing, a school building or the grounds of a school building, contiguous to a highway and posted with a school warning sign that indicates a speed limit of 15 miles per hour, while children are going to or leaving the school, either during school hours or during the noon recess period. The prima facie limit shall also apply when approaching, at a distance of less than 500 feet from, or passing, school grounds that are not separated from the highway by a fence, gate, or other physical barrier while the grounds are in use by children and the highway is posted with a school warning sign that indicates a speed limit of 15 miles per hour.

(B) A 25 miles per hour prima facie limit in a residence district, on a highway with a posted speed limit of 30 miles per hour or slo... [ more ]

 

 COMMENT 501686 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:54 PM

683 - who are you referring to? The speed limit on S Turnpike is 40mph

 

 COMMENT 501687P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:56 PM

Actually, the original questioner has the right intent, and you "slow down!" people are incorrect. The speed limit is 40, UNLESS children are present. So, someone doing 25 mph in a 40 mph zone is irritating to those of us who read the laws and understand plain English.

[We've got overly cautious types who regularly slow to 15 mph by our closest Elementary school, even on a Sunday afternoon, without any children in sight. Learn to drive better please.]

 

 COMMENT 501688P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 05:57 PM

All drivers are expected to know this:
V C Section 22352 Prima Facie Speed Limits
https://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d11/vc22352.htm

Why use latin phrases?! They know better. Many medical facilities write to a 4th or 5th grade level for info and consent forms. sheesh.
Yes, I think I would rather live in a world where everyone knew what "prima facie" means.

 

 COMMENT 501691 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 06:37 PM

The speed signs are pretty self explanatory. don't know how old google street view photos are, but are there flashers now? The police only do school zone enforcement during school hours and close to dropoff/pickup hours. Yes, its illegal to speed and can get a ticket any time you break the rules, but most police officers will not enforce outside those hours because it will not be a solid case in court.

 

 COMMENT 501693 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-10 06:41 PM

Reading the DMV site explains why the OP posted the question in the first place. My answer has always been: "reasonable and prudent." If it is a bright, sunny day and no one is around, I'll drive as fast as I feel comfortable on the road. If it is raining, I creep along slower than my grandmother.

Yes, I have been pulled over for speeding, but I have never been issued a citation because "reasonable and prudent" will stand up in court.

If kids are present, 25 mph is your speed limit. If not, at or above 40 is reasonable and prudent for the conditions.

 

 COMMENT 501740P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-11 08:17 AM

687P: speed limit is exactly that, a limit, a maximum speed, not the speed one should be traveling. It is indeed plain English and it's too bad if you find it irritating!

If it is 40 MPH, anything under that is legal, so long as it is reasonable and prudent, as 693 notes, for the conditions. 25 MPH in a city is perfectly reasonable. And prudent.

 

 COMMENT 501742 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-11 08:20 AM

As someone who once received a speeding ticket for going 40 in a school zone (with no kids present), all I can say is that I learned in traffic school that it is at "the discretion of the officer".

 

 COMMENT 501753 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-11 08:46 AM

The ambiguity in this rule of the road is that the signs appear to shift the burden of determining "when children are present" to the discretion of the driver. Obviously children may be present at or near a school grounds even when school is not in session. If it is clearly not a school day like Sunday or a holiday, or very early or very late then the driver may go 40 or less if there are no children present (i.e. visible) This exposes the driver to the discretion of an officer who may see children (the reference is intentionally plural) in the vicinity of the school grounds. Most likely the 25 MPH rule will only be enforced during, just before and just after the hours the school is open for attendance but like the often used phrase in the vehicle code "when it is safe to do so" it may be better to slow down and be certain than to risk an accident or a ticket.

 

 RHS agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-11 10:03 AM

781--you are wrong. In CA the posted speed limit is the normal and presumed safe speed limit but one may go faster when it is reasonable to do so. The actual max limit for autos (without trailers) and motorcycles is 65 unless posted higher as it is on some freeways.

 

 COMMENT 501824P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-11 10:58 AM

I drive 25 when school is letting out or taking in. Where I drive, there are yellow flashing lights on during those times of the day. I do this whether or not any children are visible. Other times I drive the higher speed limit, but slow down to 25 if any child is present.

 

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