Thomas McCutcheon

Q: My son got a ticket for racing on the roadway. He was just trying to change lanes and a car sped up and passed him and he got a ticket. How can my son get a ticket when he didn’t even know he was in a race?

~ Charlotte, Waterloo, AL

A: First of all, officers are supposed to base their charges on what they see. Sometimes they get it wrong. It could very well be that the officer believes that what he saw was a race.

Drivers in Alabama are required to follow of the Alabama Rules of the Road. Those rules found in the Alabama Code and are updated from time to time. The rule of the road that deals with racing is §32-5A-178.

There are two types of racing under the statute and both are a violation of the law. The first is what we would think of as a “real race”. Two cars that hit the gas at a green light to see whose car is faster is a race. So is racing from point to point or around a certain area to compare the relative horsepower of the cars is what we think of as racing.

What may be the case here is that there is another definition of racing. Using a vehicle in attempt to prevent another vehicle from passing is defined as racing under the statute.

It may very well be that your son is innocent and the other driver guilty.

It may be that they both have fast cars and were racing each other. Until you hear all three sides of that story, you won’t know what actually happened.

If parents show up with a young driver and tell the judge that they take these charges seriously, most judges will take the presence of the parents into consideration when determining how best to handle the case. If the young driver is already in trouble at home it reassures the judge.

Buckle up, drive safely and as always your referrals are appreciated! 256-764-0112

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