Safe Driving in OUR NeighborhoodBy Deputy D. Pierce, Travis County Motor Division
One of our neighbors, Joy Hall Bryant had a great idea for a series of articles on common Traffic Questions. Fellow WB resident, Travis County Sheriff Deputy Deke Pierce offered to answer the questions she posed. We’ll be featuring one subject an issue for the next few months and would love to hear your questions/suggestions for more articles at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks, Joy for coming up with the idea and thanks Deke for clarifying traffic laws for us!
Texas Transportation code 545.066 states:
An operator on a roadway, when approaching from either direction a school bus stopped to receive or discharge students:
Shall stop before reaching the bus when the bus is operating visual signal, (flashing red lights visible from 500 feet in normal sun light) and may not proceed until; the bus resumes motion, the operator is signaled by the bus driver to proceed, or the visual signal is no longer activated.
An operator on a roadway having separate roadways is not required to stop. Separate roadways means there is an intervening space on which vehicles are not permitted to drive, a physical barrier, or a clearly indicated dividing section constructed to impede traffic. A roadway only separated by a turn lane is not considered separate.
That being said, if a bus stops on a street like Wells Port all traffic must stop. A street similar to Wells Branch Parkway, only traffic on the same side of the roadway with the bus must stop. A roadway like FM 1325/Burnet Road all traffic must stop.
The total fine including court cost for passing a school bus with lights activated is $605, up to 1 year in jail if the driver causes serious bodily injury and a state jail felony if a person has been previously convicted.
2 thoughts on “Safe Driving with TCSO Deputy Deke Pierce”
Great idea! I would like to know if it is possible to enforce an Ordinance of DOC in the neighborhood. I have a neighbor who drives up and down the street playing very, very loud music at least four times a day. Sometimes after midnight. This has been going for many months now. Also, he seems to drive on the fast side for such quiet street.
From Deputy Pierce –
Here is what the statue says,
Sec. 42.01. DISORDERLY CONDUCT. (a) A person commits an offense if he intentionally or knowingly:(1) uses abusive, indecent, profane, or vulgar language in a public place, and the language by its very utterance tends to incite an immediate breach of the peace;(2) makes an offensive gesture or display in a public place, and the gesture or display tends to incite an immediate breach of the peace;(3) creates, by chemical means, a noxious and unreasonable odor in a public place;(4) abuses or threatens a person in a public place in an obviously offensive manner;(5) makes unreasonable noise in a public place other than a sport shooting range, as defined by Section 250.001, Local Government Code, or in or near a private residence that he has no right to occupy;(6) fights with another in a public place;(7) discharges a firearm in a public place other than a public road or a sport shooting range, as defined by Section 250.001, Local Government Code;(8) displays a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm;(9) discharges a firearm on or across a public road;(10) exposes his anus or genitals in a public place and is reckless about whether another may be present who will be offended or alarmed by his act; or(11) for a lewd or unlawful purpose:(A) enters on the property of another and looks into a dwelling on the property through any window or other opening in the dwelling;(B) while on the premises of a hotel or comparable establishment, looks into a guest room not the person’s own through a window or other opening in the room; or(C) while on the premises of a public place, looks into an area such as a restroom or shower stall or changing or dressing room that is designed to provide privacy to a person using the area.(b) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a)(4) that the actor had significant provocation for his abusive or threatening conduct.(c) For purposes of this section:(1) an act is deemed to occur in a public place or near a private residence if it produces its offensive or proscribed consequences in the public place or near a private residence; and(2) a noise is presumed to be unreasonable if the noise exceeds a decibel level of 85 after the person making the noise receives notice from a magistrate or peace officer that the noise is a public nuisance.(d) An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor unless committed under Subsection (a)(7) or (a)(8), in which event it is a Class B misdemeanor.
That being said, I do not have a meter to read the noise. But as long as I could articulate the offense in court I do not believe I would have a problem. Especially, if I had resident that would back my up. Now the speed, I can do something about that. If you ever have an issue with any type of traffic problem you can call 854-9728 and tell them you want a selective traffic for your street. Have the location and times of the problem ready for the call taker.