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Can you get a traffic ticket for cutting through a gas station parking lot to avoid a red light?
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Can you get a traffic ticket for cutting through a gas station parking lot to avoid a red light?


Yes. Avoidance of a traffic control device.

in california you surely can. my husband got one for that very thing. NOT an urban legend!

sea link

You sure can! It's called "avoiding a traffic control device" here in New Jersey, and yes, I know someone who got nailed for it. He hasn't done it since :)

Bob J
It depends on the state. All of them I have lived in you can get a ticket.


Yes, it is called "avoiding an intersection", you can get it anytime you go out of a lane into a lot to dodge a light.

Yes! it's considered open to the public like a parking lot ect.


Tom Sh*t
In most states it is illegal. It is considered unsafe driving and the potential for a fatal accident rises. After all people are also walking across the lot.

When I got out of high school I worked at a gas station and one night I had to measure teh tanks. that was dropping a meacuring stick in the actual tank and reading it. One night I was doing this when a car decided avoid the light and cut through the light. By the time he realized I was there it was nearly too late and he missed me by perhaps a foot. The driver didn't really slow down, and never stopped. If I had been hit it is likely he would have killed me.

That is why it is a moving violation in most states.

sylvio g
only if you get caught

Razor Jim

The law in Texas states:

§ 545.423[0]. CROSSING PROPERTY.
(a) An operator may not cross a sidewalk or drive through a driveway, parking lot, or business or residential entrance without stopping the vehicle.
(b) An operator may not cross or drive in or on a sidewalk, driveway, parking lot, or business or residential entrance at an intersection to turn right or left from one highway to another highway.

I found it by searching for "545.423" at

That basically says that you cannot use the gas station parking lot to go from one road to another. Even if the light is green, you can get a ticket from crossing the parking lot just to get to the other road.

Jgain---Yes, there are laws against this. I just gave you the actual Texas law and even a link so that you could look it up yourself.

Yes, and the range of offenses can vary from reckless driving to illegal turns. However, you would probably have to be blatant about it.

BTW: Tickets are usually issued because the business complains about the traffic. It's dangerous to their patrons. Someone who is cutting through the lot is usually in hurry and may inadvertently collide with their customers. Which is NOT a good thing for several reasons.


I don't think so...my mom does it all the time though! HA!

senior citizen
This is a violation of the law in many jurisdictions. Anyone who does this deserves to be ticketed for trespassing and endangering others by their reckless action.

Yes, and I am guessing you already did.


It is called cutting corners to avoid traffic control device in Texas so yes you can get a ticket.

In California you can. It is called an illegal U Turn! If you are going to do that, stop your car and check your tires. Then it is not considered illegal.


Yes you can so do not do it.


it is against the law in most cities you better check local laws before thinking it is an urban ledgend. In most states it is considered reckless driving

Word Nerd
Yes. Years ago I had a friend who was pulled over for that very reason. Ended up getting a DUI too.

Kathy H
Yes, you can. Although it may not be enforced in your area, it's still illegal. The law enforcement agency in our area actually puts a guy on the sidewalk sitting on a bucket in plain clothes with a newspaper that has a walkie talkie in it. Whenever someone cuts through the gas station or runs the red light, he radios the patrol on the other side. Sometimes they switch it up and pretend to be a survey crew or maintenance workers.

In many places, yes. Hard to get caught though, and you can always try telling the cop that your just checking prices.

Yes, it is against the law to bypass a red light by cutting through any p/l. It dumb law but it is one.

mark v
yes it is the same as running a red light!

cornell b
Depends on the "ticket quota" for the day....

Peter P
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