I write consistently about traffic offenses that are related with DUI arrests in Georgia such as Failure to Maintain Lane in Georgia or Aggressive Driving in Georgia. Today I will focus on Illegal Stopping on a Roadway in Georgia. Most people don't even know this is an offense. Most of the time this is related to DUIs because drivers will pull over or stop on the roadway as a result of intoxication.
What's the law say on Illegal Stopping on a Roadway in Georgia?
The Georgia Code outlines Georgia law on Illegal Stopping on a Roadway in Georgia in O.C.G.A. §40-6-203 as drivers not legally being permitted to stop, stand, or park their vehicle in any of the following places:
- On the roadway side of any vehicle stopped or parked at the edge of a curb of a street
- On a sidewalk
- Within an intersection
- On a crosswalk
- Between a safety zone and the adjacent curb or within 30 feet of points on the curb immediately opposite the ends of a safety zone, unless a different length is indicated by signs or markings
- Alongside or opposite any street excavation or obstruction when stopping, standing, or parking would obstruct traffic
- Upon any bridge or other elevated structure upon a highway or within a highway tunnel
- On any railroad tracks
- On any controlled-access highway
- In the area between roadways of a divided highway, including crossovers
- At any place where official signs prohibit stopping
Just like most other traffic laws, the law on Illegal Stopping on a Roadway in Georgia includes exceptions. The law allows standing, stopping, or even parking a vehicle when it is necessary to avoid conflicting with other traffic or to comply with law or directions of a police officer/traffic-control device. The law also allows for momentarily standing or parking a vehicle to either pick up or drop off passengers in the following places:
- In front of a public or private driveway
- Within 15 feet of a fire hydrant
- Within 20 feet of a crosswalk at an intersection
- Within 30 feet upon the approach to any flashing signal, stop sign, yield sign, or traffic-control signal located at the side of a roadway
- Within 20 feet of the driveway entrance to any fire station or on the side of a street opposite the entrance to any fire station within 75 feet of such entrance (when properly posted)
- At any place where official signs prohibit standing
How is this related to a DUI in Georgia?
As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, a violation of the Illegal Stopping on a Roadway statute (O.C.G.A. §40-6-203) is commonly the basis for an officer's investigation of a driver and his or her vehicle. A common situation is when a person realizes that they have had too much to drink and pulls over to sleep it off. This can cause a police officer to do a “safety check” on the vehicle to see if an occupant needs assistance. The result can be a person charged with a DUI who was in fact trying to take a responsible action by pulling over. Consequently, the act of illegal stopping on the roadway can actually result in a articulable suspicion to do a DUI investigation that later results in probable cause to arrest for DUI.
If you or a loved one has been charged with Illegal Stopping on a Roadway and a DUI in Georgia, contact a Georgia DUI Lawyer today. We can help walk you through your case and provide the specific Georgia DUI Defenses that apply to your particular case.