California Vehicle Code 27600 requires cars to either have fenders or mudflaps “at least as wide as the tire tread” to prevent mud or water spraying behind the car. Most cars and trucks already have the proper fenders or mudflaps to meet the requirements of this law. Issues arise when the car or truck is modified (such as a lifted truck) to a height that the stock fenders do not provide adequate mud/water spray protection.
California Vehicle Code 27600’s exact text is shown below:
Defenses in CVC 27600:
For CVC 27600 cases, the best defenses involve attacking the position of the police officer and whether they really were in a position to see the violation. Other defenses include showing actual compliance with the vehicle code by meeting the exceptions spelled out in the statute.
Punishment for CVC 27600:
CVC 27600 involves no “points” on your driving record, and doesn’t involve jail time. A small fine will be imposed that can likely be reduced if the driver shows corrective action.
Probable cause for a DUI Case: Not having mud flaps or fenders
DUI cases typically involve a traffic enforcement stop by police for a violation of a vehicle code section. This can include any violation for equipment issues with the car, or violations of driving rules like speeding, unsafe turns, unsafe lane changes or lane straddling.
Difficulties in attacking probable cause based on equipment violations:
Unlike speeding, there are no measurements associated with someone observing an equipment violation. Calculating speeding is said to be “quantitative” because it involves a measurement. Observing an equipment problem is “qualitative” because no quantity is measured, simply an observation of whether the situation involves a violation. This “yes/no” determiniation of either “yes” there is a violation” or “no, there is no violation” is much more difficult to attack because the accuracy of the determination isn’t at issue.