Is there a wheelchair flag law?

What’s the law?:

I noticed lately going down Wren Avenue, there’s quite a few
motorized wheelchairs going usually on the side of the road, not
always on the sidewalk. Isn’t there a law that they should have a
flag so motorists would be able to see them? And you’re doing a
great job Red Phone! Thank you.

What’s the law?: “I noticed lately going down Wren Avenue, there’s quite a few motorized wheelchairs going usually on the side of the road, not always on the sidewalk. Isn’t there a law that they should have a flag so motorists would be able to see them? And you’re doing a great job Red Phone! Thank you.”

No caller, thank you.

The Red Phone contacted Capt. Debbie Moore with Gilroy Police Department who said there are no specific laws regarding flags on motorized wheelchairs. She referred Red Phone to Traffic Officer Joseph Crivello, who concurred.

“I don’t believe there is any law requiring a flag being to be displayed on motorized wheelchairs,” he said.

Crivello added that although there is no law, sometimes companies simply sell the wheelchairs with flags.

“I had a prior occasion where an inquiry was made regarding a collision, a vehicle versus a wheelchair,” he said. “The organization that distributes the wheelchairs did inform me that it was their policy that all wheelchairs they distribute be outfitted with the flag.”

Save parking for handicapped: “I’d like to ask people why can’t they obey the laws on handicapped parking? They park where they’re not supposed to and you try to tell them to move and they just laugh at you. I have a friend who has a sign in front of her house and they still park there. The neighbors park their truck in front of the house, so she had a sign put on. And they still park there. She called the police one day but by the time the police came, they had taken off. Why can’t people just obey the signs? That’s all I wanted to tell you. Bye.”

The Red Phone agrees that those not allowed to park in designated spaces should not – especially in front of your friend’s home. And for

someone to laugh simply shows a lack of class.

However, it knows from experience and would like to point out people don’t always have ‘physically’ identifiable handicaps. For example, someone under treatment for or in remission from cancer may not show any physical signs, but may have the blue sign to park in a handicapped parking space.

But, readers, please show some courtesy and don’t use the marked spaces if you don’t have a blue marker for your rear-view mirror. Save them for people who actually need to save those few extra steps.

Who picks it up?: “Hi Red Phone. Along Hecker Pass Highway, the crews picked up a bunch of trash, I think it’s the DUI arrestees. That was about a week ago and the bags are still there and trash is starting to blow all over the place. … I’m wondering who’s in charge of picking up the trash bags that the DUI arrestees fill? Thanks.”

The Red Phone first contacted the main office of Caltrans in Sacramento to notify them of the trash bags left on the highway. After being thanked for the notice, it was referred to the ‘local’ Caltrans office in Oakland.

It then got in touch with John Bermudez, deputy for mainte-

nance for Caltrans in the Bay Area. He said the trash bags have since been picked up.

“We sometimes use outside resources from the county or the cities … they do the pickup of the trash and then we come through a few days later and pick up the bags,” he said.

Interestingly enough, he added that garbage picked up along highways is intentionally left for a short period of time.

“One of the purposes for leaving the bags for a few days is to let people know how they’re impacting the freeway and to kind of make them more sensitive to littering.”

Photos of Gilroy: “I just want to tell you how much I appreciate the photographs on page two. I moved down from the Bay Area to this area and one of the things I like especially is the ruralness and the agriculture. So the pictures are only to be found down here. Certainly I never saw that type of rural scenery in the San Jose papers. Once again, thanks for the pictures. Keep them up.”

You got it, caller. The photos on page A2 will continue. The Red Phone and the Dispatch’s talented photographers thank you for your call.

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