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Red Sticker violation legal questions

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Ok... first of all, I admit freely that I am splitting hairs and looking for a legal way to get around the red sticker rules. Therefore, I don't need any lectures from the "just accept it" crowd.

With that said, here is my understanding of the charge for riding off season. If caught, you will be charged with VC38020 which states:

38020. Except as otherwise provided in this division, no person

shall operate, transport, or leave standing any off-highway motor

vehicle subject to identification under this code which is not

registered under the provisions of Division 3 (commencing with

Section 4000), unless it is identified under the provisions of this

chapter. A violation of this section is an infraction. Riding in

violation of seasons established by Section 2412(f) and 2415 of Title

13 of the California Code of Regulations constitutes a violation of

this section. This section shall not apply to the operation,

transportation, or leaving standing of an off-highway vehicle

pursuant to a valid special permit.

The section in bold is pertinent to riding out of season.

This code says you can't ride in violation of Title 13 CCR 2412(f) which states:

(f) Off-road motorcycles and ATVs, and engines used in such vehicles, that do not meet the emissions standards in subsection (:banghead: above may operate only during certain periods of time at certain off-highway vehicle (OHV) riding areas. Section 2415 of this Article lists these California OHV riding areas and their associated riding seasons for offhighway recreational vehicles that are subject to use restrictions.

By the way... 2415 simply is a list of riding areas and red sticker seasons, so I have not included it here.

So, the bold section of 2412(f) above says you are subject to the riding seasons in defined in 2415 if your bike does not meed the emission standards in 2412(:busted:. This section starts off with this paragraph:

(:busted: For purposes of certification in California, manufacturers must comply with the following exhaust emissions

from new off-highway recreational vehicles and engines that are sold, leased, used, or introduced into commerce in

California. Exhaust emissions must not exceed:

Now... here is the interesting part... 2412(:crazy: talks about certificatioin in CA by manufacturers and then it gives a list of emmission standards. However, if you get a "red sticker" ticket, you are not accused of not having a manufacturer's certification. This is what is you are alleged to have done:

-violating VC 38020 which says you can't violate Title 13 CCR 2412(f)

-violating 2412(f) which says you can only operate your vehicle at certain times in certain areas IF your vehicle DOES NOT MEET THE EMMISSION STANDARDS in 2412(:busted:.

So... 2412(f) only holds you to specific riding seasons if your bike doesn't meet the emission standards of 2412(:busted:. 2412(f) doesn't say anything about manufacturer's certification. This is important, because it appears that the state would have to show that your bike did not meet the emmision standards of 2412(:banghead: in order to find you guilty of an infraction. Simply showing that the manufacturer had not certified your bike is not relevant. If 2412(f) said your bike has to have a manufacturer's certification as per 2412(:lol:, then my point would not apply.

So, if I was to get a "red sticker" ticket, I think I'd ask the prosecution to produce evidence that my bike does NOT meet the emission standards since that burden would clearly lie with the prosecution.

This seems logical to me... but I am afraid that I am missing something. If there are any LEO's or attornies (or anyone with a constructive opinion) out there... I'd like to hear your input.

Jimbo

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Me thinks that because the Manufacturer failed to provide/prove that the bike met the standard, in essence (or in default) means that the bike does NOT meet the standard. This would be the states proof that you were riding in violation of emission standards. The burden of proof would be on you to prove otherwise, and proving it after the fact might not fly well in court. My 2 cents... :banghead:

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You are already missing the point. I didn't suggest that the manufacturer's failure to something justifies anything. My point was that the way the law is written, we are restricted by the red sticker ONLY if our bikes don't meet the emmission requirements. There is nothing in the law that says we have to follow the red sticker schedule if our bike has a red sticker or any specific VIN.

Jimbo

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You are already missing the point. I didn't suggest that the manufacturer's failure to something justifies anything. My point was that the way the law is written, we are restricted by the red sticker ONLY if our bikes don't meet the emmission requirements. There is nothing in the law that says we have to follow the red sticker schedule if our bike has a red sticker or any specific VIN.

Jimbo

Yes, I missed that, nor do I now see it. Perhaps you found a loop hole :banghead:, or you might be reading too much into what you feel are the salient points of the text. Subtlety is not my strong suit. Either way, Good Luck! :banghead:

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Red Sticker is actually not determined by the specific emissions of one bike but by an allotment of emissions allowed by a company.

Same with cars.

Yamaha is givin a specific emissions number that it is allowed to meet. It is up to the company to pick what bikes are red or green sticker.

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Jimbo

I think that you could present a good argument in a court room to back up your idea. Failure of the mfg. to apply for a certification does not mean that the bike won't meet the emmission specs. That would put the burden on the prosecution to show that the bike didn't meet the specs when the citation was issued. You may also argue that you had made modifications to the engine and now the mfgs testing doesn't apply.

Good to see someone that is not "staying within the lines".

Ride on

Brewster

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Now the question is, WHAT ARE THE ALLOWABLE LIMITS? If you find this, I have a few bikes we can test on a smog machine to see what they emit.

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Red Sticker is actually not determined by the specific emissions of one bike but by an allotment of emissions allowed by a company.

Same with cars.

Yamaha is givin a specific emissions number that it is allowed to meet. It is up to the company to pick what bikes are red or green sticker.

I think you may be right. Even so, the law says your vehicle has to meet emmissions standards... it doesn't say the manufacturer has to have your vehicle certified.

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Jimbo

I think that you could present a good argument in a court room to back up your idea. Failure of the mfg. to apply for a certification does not mean that the bike won't meet the emmission specs. That would put the burden on the prosecution to show that the bike didn't meet the specs when the citation was issued. You may also argue that you had made modifications to the engine and now the mfgs testing doesn't apply.

Good to see someone that is not "staying within the lines".

Ride on

Brewster

I'm glad you agree. Now, we just need to find someone who has a red sticker ticket to test this theory in court!!

Jimbo

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Red Sticker is actually not determined by the specific emissions of one bike but by an allotment of emissions allowed by a company.

Same with cars.

Yamaha is givin a specific emissions number that it is allowed to meet. It is up to the company to pick what bikes are red or green sticker.

That's only true for EPA regs, not CARB regs, and it only applies to fleet vehicles (passenger cars and trucks), not OHVs. OHVs are required to meet CARB regs that are based on displacement and applied per engine family, not manufacturer-specific models. A few years back Suzuki tried to inflate their CAFE numbers by rolling their motorcycle mileage ratings into their corporate average. It didn't work.

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I'm glad you agree. Now, we just need to find someone who has a red sticker ticket to test this theory in court!!

Good luck. On my day in court I had an "unofficial" confab with a Ventura County Sheriff about my ticket. He intimated that cops are being discouraged from showing up in court for these tickets. They would rather have a dismissal than a proper legal challenge to the law. Since so many people simply pay them, they still make money. Remember, a good percentage of every ticket paid for goes to the citing agency's coffers. Even if the conviction rate is only 50%, that's still a lot of money.

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Good luck. On my day in court I had an "unofficial" confab with a Ventura County Sheriff about my ticket. He intimated that cops are being discouraged from showing up in court for these tickets. They would rather have a dismissal than a proper legal challenge to the law. Since so many people simply pay them, they still make money. Remember, a good percentage of every ticket paid for goes to the citing agency's coffers. Even if the conviction rate is only 50%, that's still a lot of money.

That's what I was suspecting.

If my interpretation of the law is correct, then VC38020, the red sticker code, is actually an unenforcable law. If we can't get a cop to show up for a test case, maybe we should reconsider the protest ride at Gorman on the first day of the red sticker off season.

Jimbo

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That's what I was suspecting.

If my interpretation of the law is correct, then VC38020, the red sticker code, is actually an unenforcable law.

I see it as such.

If we can't get a cop to show up for a test case, maybe we should reconsider the protest ride at Gorman on the first day of the red sticker off season.

A protest ride would be more about getting publicity to increase awareness and support. What many riders and non-riders don't seem to realize is that OHVs are the only class of vehicle subjected to any kind of seasonal usage restriction in the entire state. It is unfair to single them out when A) there is little if any reduction in emissions due to these restrictions, and :banghead: there are far better targets for restriction that will genuinely reduce emissions.

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From what I read it would be unfeasable for US to test. They are measuring in grams per kilometer. Most vehicles are smog tested in parts per million or %.

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From what I read it would be unfeasable for US to test. They are measuring in grams per kilometer. Most vehicles are smog tested in parts per million or %.

That's correct, and it's another reason why the CARB regs are unfair. They estimate smog reduction of non-conforming OHVs based on a ridiculous per-vehicle average yearly mileage of 8,000. I don't put 8,000 miles a year on my Jeep, I'm certainly not riding my dirt bike that much in a year.

Testing in PPM would give us a way to compare to other combustion-engined products, though. Might be interesting to see that my WR puts out less pollutants than Pedro the gardener's leaf blower.

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From what I read it would be unfeasable for US to test. They are measuring in grams per kilometer. Most vehicles are smog tested in parts per million or %.

Shouldn't that just be a simple conversion??

Anyway... testing our own bikes would only be evidence that our bikes do (if they do) pass the emmission standards. However, that is not our burden to prove as per Title 13 CCR.

Testing would serve no purpose UNLESS, someone wanted to bring a lawsuit against the DMV showing that they have a bike that meets the requirements of Title 13 but DMV is issuing a red sticker anyway. I'm not sure if this would be a good precedence or not. Sounds like that could possibly lead to smog testing for our bikes at our expense.

My idea is that the law now places the burden of smog testing on the state to show that a bike does NOT meet the standards. The state is not going to bite that apple and assume responsibility for smog testing our bikes. Therefore, this will just become an "unfunded mandate" that simply gets ignored.

By the way.... has anyone found in CCR or any other code (not DMV policy... that's not law) the requirements for issuing red/green stickers and the whole VIN thing? I would bet that is simply DMV's policy to enforce VC 38020 and Title 13 CRC. If I am right, thier policy is contrary to the very codes it tries to enforce.

Jimbo

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We may also have to be ready for repercussions of pushing on this too hard.

The rules could be changed to require some sort of smog test and then ANY aftermarket items added to the bike that could affect the emmissions would have to be CARB approved or we could be cited.

IMHO, it would be better to go after CARB to prove that there is a measureable difference in air quality using the red sticker operation ban. Unfortunately, I doubt that there is anyone in our state legislature that has the balls to challange an pro enviro law.

Ride on

Brewster

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They would not have to be submitted to smog tests unless they decided to test all motorcycles. And then they would have to test basically all gasonline engines.

Jim-bo. If there is a conversion, I do not know of one. But the test they would be wanting to perform would be something like the dyno test which the cars nw have to go through but much more involved. They have to take all the air/particulate matter from the tailpaipe and basically measure it. The tests now jthat we perform on cars just take sample readings. But none the less they should still have to issue some sort of documentation that states the bikes failed, not that they did not pass because they were not tested. Might be something to throw over to the AMA or the BRC and see what they have to say about it. Hell who knows, Maybe you found the loophole they have been looking for.

Reminds me of when you would bring a federal certified car into CA you would have to pay a smog impact fee, even though they most of the time are the same exact vehicle with the same exact smog equipment as a CA certified car is/was. The manufacturers did not want to pay the cerifacation fees for CA unless they were going to be sold in CA. Guess what, they found this unconstitutional and the DMV was ordered the refund all the smog impact fees for a certail pariod prior.

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We may also have to be ready for repercussions of pushing on this too hard. The rules could be changed to require some sort of smog test and then ANY aftermarket items added to the bike that could affect the emmissions would have to be CARB approved or we could be cited.
Brew, what makes you think this isn't already in the works? The red sticker program is just the first step in a larger process. By singling out OHV users, a traditionally easy group to pick on because of our own divisiveness, CARB was able to establish law. Spreading it out to affect motorcyclists one faction at a time will be much easier than if they tried to go after all motorcyclists at once.
IMHO, it would be better to go after CARB to prove that there is a measureable difference in air quality using the red sticker operation ban. Unfortunately, I doubt that there is anyone in our state legislature that has the balls to challange an pro enviro law.
Unfortunately, the establishment of the red sticker law without the science to back it up now puts the onus of validation on us. Testing is expensive, almost prohibitively so. CARB is the agency entrusted to do this and any law they introduce should be supported by valid science. They have circumvented this, IMO, and they have done so with an effort that targets the least of the problem while ignoring the larger of the problem. OHV users are the target of least resistance. If CARB had tried to reduce diesel emissions (which are far more responsible for particulate matter and emissions) they would have gone up against the very powerful trucking lobby, which has a lot of Washington clout and PAC money. Until we get our collective asses together and realize that we are and will continue to be a target for more restrictive legislation and that ANY legislation affects us all, we will never be able to stop our pasttime from being eroded. The perception by the general public that we are universally reckless and that motorcycle riding is a leisure activity just makes it harder for them to support us. We need to show them that what is being done to us today, will eventually happen to them tomorrow.

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