Some Lesser-Known Traffic Offenses Carry Harsh Penalties

Thomas Jeter • July 11, 2016

Some Lesser-Known Traffic Offenses Carry Harsh Penalties

When it comes to traffic fines, each state has some control over the rules set regarding violations and the fines that will be given. Understanding these laws can help you recognize the correct consequence associated with each offense and the responsibility you have as a driver. Here are a few things about traffic citations in South Carolina that you may not have realized.

Open Container

You Cannot Have a Container of Alcohol Left Open in a Car. There are two distinct laws concerning this violation: one places restrictions on any liquor while the other is focused on beer and wine. If the beverage has more than .5% alcohol, drivers are not allowed to have an open container of it in a moving vehicle. The difficult thing about this law is that some drinks contain more than this level of alcohol, yet are not labeled as an alcoholic beverage, making them difficult for drivers to recognize. It’s worth checking the label, though. One conviction of this type can land a driver a fine and/or jail time.

Driving Under Suspension

There Are Harsh Penalties for Driving With a Suspended License. If you’ve had your license suspended, operating any motor vehicle can result in hefty fines and extensive prison time. The penalties will be different depending on whether or not your license was suspended due to a DUI. Prison time can exceed six months with fines incurred as well. You may also have your license permanently revoked if you are a repeat offender.

Failure to Stop for Blue Lights

You Must Stop for Police Officers. This may seem like a given, but there are strict penalties for those who don’t stop at all, don’t stop when an officer thinks they should or don’t stop as quickly as an officer believes they should have. This is why this law is often questioned by those who are cited for violating it. The penalties can include prison time of up to 25 years depending on the severity of the infraction.

Traffic Accidents

You Will Receive a Ticket if You Cause an Accident. When two or more parties are involved in a traffic accident, a police officer must give a ticket to at least one driver who is believed to be at fault. One problem with this is that the officer rarely witnesses the accident and must go off of the drivers’ testimonies. Tickets of this type will result in insurance premium increases as well as fines and other consequences.

By understanding laws related to traffic citations in South Carolina, you’ll be better prepared to defend yourself should you be accused of a violation.  Each case is different, so contact a skilled and knowledgable traffic law defense lawyer for a free consultation on your case.