if someone brake checks you who is at fault This is a topic that many people are looking for. amritsang.org is a channel providing useful information about learning, life, digital marketing and online courses …. it will help you have an overview and solid multi-faceted knowledge . Today, amritsang.org would like to introduce to you Brake Checking is Illegal! Lehtos Law Ep. 5.164. Following along are instructions in the video below:
Welcome once again to laceless law. Im steve leto. Someone asked me a question question this morning and i thought thats a good one is break checking legal break checking legal.
Weve all seen these on youtube. I think weve read about them as well. But youre driving along the road one day and you see this happening to other people okay.
And what happens is someones driving too close behind someone else so. The person in front. Thinks hey i can get that person off my rear bumper by just stomping on my brakes and you hit your brakes they hit the brakes and the person behind now has got to hit their brakes in a panic.
Stop and youll see videos where that goes wildly out of control. Ive seen it where the cars collide. Ive seen it with the car on the back loses control.
And ive also seen it where someone passes somebody that theyre angry with gets and cuts in front of them and then stomps on their brakes. As a brake check so brake check as a general term is when you hit your brakes not because you need to stop. But because youre trying to scare.
The person or get rid of the person behind you and the question is is brake checking legal and for the most part. No. It is not it is not so i hate to break the news to you.
But im the attorney here so well talk about this but heres the thing a lot of times this stuff goes unpunished. Because there are no police officers around to see it and a lot of times nothing bad happens like theres no collision. Nobody gets hurt is often just two people you know letting their tempers rage out of control while theyre behind the wheels of their cars.
But generally speaking the laws that cover this i think most people misunderstand them. And theres a common misconception that whenever. Theres an accident and one car hits another car from behind that its gonna always be the fault of the car in the back and so a lot of people think hey my brake checks im gonna cut in front of them stomped my brakes if they hit me its their fault cuz theyre behind me and the there behind me rule is not as clear as you might think there are situations.
Obviously. Where the car in back is not at fault. And if you dont believe me i can give you a great example.
Im at a stoplight youre im me i put my car in reverse. And ram you youre behind me youre behind me. But its not your fault.
So the rules that come into play here first of all i up the variety of rules that simply address us and i double check this in a couple other states and most states have got laws. Very similar the ones. Im going to tell you about right now these are the laws of michigan.
But if you want to look them up in your own state. Because your state will have very similar laws. So for instance.
There is a law in michigan requiring a certain distance between vehicles so youre right. If youre driving down the road and theres somebody in your rear view mirror. Whos right up on your bumper.
Theyre breaking the law. No question if theyre theyre following too close so in case. Youre curious mcl 257 6 4.
3. The statute is called distance between vehicles the operator of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent having due regards to speed of the vehicles on the traffic.
Upon and the condition of the highway. So obviously. Its bumper to bumper traffic moving 1 mile.
An hour you can get closer to somebody if youre out on the freeway and youre doing the speed limit say its 70 miles an hour. Then you dont want some on your bumper. So if youre the person back you want to back away.
But heres the thing if the person behind you is following you too closely theyre breaking the law doesnt give you the right to break the law. Ok so heres what were looking at now operation of a vehicle signals for stopping or turning. And again.
This is going to depend on whether you simply started in front of the other person and stomped on your brakes or if you pass them and cut in front of them and stomped on your brakes. Because if you pass them and cut in front of them and stomped on your brakes. You probably broke a couple laws there because for one thing when you are passing somebody youre supposed to pass them and get far enough ahead of them to where you can pull in front of them without interfering with the distance between the vehicles.
But likewise you also have to use your turn signal when you change lanes and ive yet to see a brake check or if somebody pulled around somebody and use their turn signal first. But it turns out that when you change lanes at least in michigan. Youre required to use your turn signal.
But also youre also supposed to be doing all this stuff with due care so mcl 257 648 the operator of a vehicle upon a highway before stopping or turning and that includes lane changes shall first determine that the stopping or turning or lane. Change can be made in safety. And shell give a signal as required in this section.
So again if youre gonna change lanes in front of somebody and that involves passing them and changing lanes you got to use a turn signal and youve also got to make sure that you can be doing that in safety. So the fact that you cut in front of them. And no turn signal you broke the law and if you cut in front of them so close that you can now break check.
Them you probably also broke a little off here. Too and so that would be a civil infraction. You get some points in your license and pay some fines and costs.
If you got busted for it so again. Im talking about whether its legal or not and that time whether youre likely to get a ticket. I have no idea okay ive seen these happen on youtube.
Where clearly something happened. But it doesnt look like tickets got written so theres no police around and that happens a lot you know laws get broken. Theres no police around but in case youre curious about the signals for stopping or turning.
And youre saying wait steve it doesnt say lane change the michigan court of appeals has ruled specifically on point that changing lanes is a turn with respect to this statute. So if youre changing lanes you should be using your turn signals and the court of appeals points out quite rightly that im not a mind reader and youre not a mind reader. And so the idea that someones up there just swerving around from lane to lane.
Expecting us to go oh. Theyre changing lanes. Lets give them a lot of room.
No you have to indicate youre gonna change a lane or turn okay so thats what your turn signals are for folks. So. If you dont use the turn signal properly or you pass unsafely again.
Its gonna be a civil infraction points fines costs and all of that now you might say steve lets suppose and im just driving down the road and i noticed this guy behind me and hes riding my bumper riding my bumper and youve already ive already told you that thats illegal. Its a violation of the light following too close so that guy whos following too close okay. Hes breaking the law.
So if i just give him a quick break check to maybe wake him up or indicate to him that i want him to back off. How am i breaking the law assuming that you started there in other words.
You didnt pass him you didnt enough youre just driving along minding your own business and theres someone riding your bumper and you want to slam on your brakes to wake them up okay you are in fact breaking the law because what youre doing is either careless or reckless driving and a person and this is careless a person who operates a vehicle upon a highway or other place open to the general public in a careless or negligent manner likely to endanger any person or property is responsible for a civil infraction so youre driving along youre doing 60 miles. An hour and theres a jet theres a guy behind you laughter theres a guy behind you riding your bumper. Hes riding your bumper like hes drafting in nascar okay you cant even see the front end of his car you look in your mirror.
All you see is the windshield of his car okay. Its no question hes falling too closely hes breaking the law. Okay you stop on the brakes.
A judge would have no problem saying that you stomping on the brakes at that point in time is operating a vehicle in a careless or negligent manner likely to endanger any person or property. Because remember the lower standard here is the likely to endanger property. So when you see brake checks go out of control and cars actually hit each other or the guy in the back loses controls kearney hits a guardrail thats thats damage to property the car or the guardrail take your pick and thats careless operation of a vehicle and thats you break checking.
Which is the careless operation of vehicle and by the way if somethings serious more were to happen okay. Theres a chance they could call you for reckless and reckless driving is a person who operates a vehicle upon a highway or a place open to the general public in a willful or wanton disregard to the safety of persons or property okay. So your brake check causes a a car to go out of control or car to pile up or some kind of accident.
A police officer could write that as reckless and say yeah you were operating a vehicle upon a highway or a place open to the general public in a willful or wanton disregard to the safety of the people and property behind you is you didnt hit your brakes. Because you needed to stop you hit your brakes to screw the people behind you and so that my friends is a misdemeanor for which you can go to jail for 93 days. Pay a fine of not more than 500 or both and you will get six points on your license six points on your license.
So the upshot of all of this is youre driving along the road and a car is tailgating you okay theyre breaking the law. But unless youve been recently deputized as a law enforcement officer. Or youre actually are a law enforcement officer.
Its not your job to teach them a lesson. Yeah. Its annoying if theyre on your bumper.
But guess what weve done videos here about other forms of speech that you can communicate while driving a car in fact. Its very easy to do doesnt require all of your fingers in one hand. So i would suggest that if you really feel the need to vent something communicate the other driver that they should get off your bumper.
But anything beyond that communication. Such as a brake check might be you breaking the law. Now if theres somebody up in traffic ahead of you whos driving.
You disagree with and you are inspired to go flying past them cut in front of them. And do the brake check thats even worse unless you actually pass them use your turn signal and left enough space between you and them so that you werent passing in front of them improperly. But then at that point the brake check doesnt really work does it most people ive seen to do brake checks pull up and it cut right in front of the person and the moment you cut right in front the person with whether or not you used a turn signal youre violating the law.
Im passing because the passing requires you to clear the person and then pull over when its safe to do so after you have signaled so break checking in every single one of these situations as i describe you is in fact illegal whether youre violating the law. Im passing whether youre violating the law. Im driving with due care its its its quite possible and quite likely that if is witnessed by a police officer you could be ticketed for it and like i said careless and the other things i talked about for civil infractions points.
And money that youll spend the misdemeanor of reckless driving is a crime. It will go on your permanent record you can get six points for it and you can also go to jail. And and spend 500 and fines and costs the good news is that you can get a jury trial for that and the reason.
I know that is ive defended people accused of reckless driving never somebody did a brake check. But ive got a cue. Ive been representing people whove been accused of reckless driving before and i can tell you its a very serious thing you know and so people out there who drive like its a video game forgetting that their actions have consequences.
And forgetting that in video games. I dont think you get tickets at least not the way you do in real life and in real life. When they hand you a ticket.
You cant sit you know hit reset and start the game over you gotta go deal with that ticket. So my advice to you is understand that brake checking is against the law and you probably shouldnt do it. But if you do it know that youve been warned and these bad things can happen to you questions or comments put them below lets talk together you .
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