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Transporting an open container of alcohol in California

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by 17119jfkioe, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. 17119jfkioe

    17119jfkioe

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    Can you guys help me interpret a part of the CA vehicle code.

    It clearly states that it is legal to transort an open container in a trunk of a car. In section 2 it also states if the car does not have a trunk that the container may be kept in an area of the vehicle not normally occupied by passengers. My question is: would the back part of an SUV or station wagon (the cargo area) be considered as an area not occupied by passengers?

    Would it be legal to transport an open container in this area

    Thanks!

    Here is the actual law as it is written:
    V C Section 23225 Storage of Opened Container

    Storage of Opened Container

    23225. (a) (1) It is unlawful for the registered owner of any motor vehicle to keep in a motor vehicle, when the vehicle is upon any highway or on lands, as described in subdivision (b) of Section 23220, any bottle, can, or other receptacle containing any alcoholic beverage that has been opened, or a seal broken, or the contents of which have been partially removed, unless the container is kept in the trunk of the vehicle.
    (2) If the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk and is not an off-highway motor vehicle subject to identification, as defined in Section 38012, the bottle, can, or other receptacle described in paragraph (1) shall be kept in some other area of the vehicle that is not normally occupied by the driver or passengers. For the purposes of this paragraph, a utility compartment or glove compartment shall be deemed to be within the area occupied by the driver and passengers.
    (3) If the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk and is an off-highway motor vehicle subject to identification, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 38012, the bottle, can, or other receptacle described in paragraph (1) shall be kept in a locked container. As used in this paragraph, "locked container" means a secure container that is fully enclosed and locked by a padlock, key lock, combination lock, or similar locking device.
    (b) Subdivision (a) is also applicable to a driver of a motor vehicle if the registered owner is not present in the vehicle.
    (c) This section shall not apply to the living quarters of a housecar or camper.

    Amended Sec. 4, Ch. 384, Stats. 1998. Effective August 24, 1998.
    Amended Sec. 4, Ch. 723, Stats. 1999. Effective January 1, 2000.


    http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d11/vc23225.htm
     
  2. kensb2

    kensb2 pistol n00b

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    I'm not an expert, but I would say that is correct. I have a hatchback, and would not be afraid to get pulled over with an "open container" in the hatch area.
     

  3. Woofie

    Woofie Disirregardless CLM

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    Cover it up and obey traffic laws.

    Good advice for many topics.
     
  4. youngdocglock

    youngdocglock

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    heres a good saying "ya got a warrant?" :) lol
     
  5. Altaris

    Altaris

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    Drink it really fast before you get in the car and you won't have to worry about storing the container :supergrin:
     
  6. RWBlue

    RWBlue Mr. CISSP, CISA CLM

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    Get a locked container and put it in there in the back. Now it is a closed container?
     
  7. SVTNate

    SVTNate Packers fan

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    Yes. Yes it is.
     
  8. 17119jfkioe

    17119jfkioe

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    I know these are all good points. I know what i would do. Im trying to convince someone else
     
  9. Ohio Cop

    Ohio Cop

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    Toss it in a backpack. Put it in the back part of an suv. No problem.


    The law is made for the open coors in the console or bottle of Maddog in between your legs :)


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  10. Brucev

    Brucev

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    It's junk. Trash it.
     
  11. hogfish

    hogfish Señor Member

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    I'm not an expert, but open container laws are bull crap!

    :steamed:
     
  12. Ohio Cop

    Ohio Cop

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    Why?


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  13. 17119jfkioe

    17119jfkioe

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    But do you guys think that the "area not normally occupied by passengers" is the cargo area behind the last row of seats?
     
  14. Ohio Cop

    Ohio Cop

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    Yes, that would be what the law is referencing. That area is for cargo and not persons.


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  15. Altaris

    Altaris

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    How else am I supposed to drink if I can't have an open container
     
  16. hogfish

    hogfish Señor Member

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    Say I want to spend the night at my dad's house to celebrate veteran's day with him. Our custom is to drink whisky and shoot the crap every veteran's day. I have a perfectly fine 'opened' bottle of Talisker that I want to bring over and share with him. I can't just stick it in my backpack, get on the bike, and go.

    That's why.

    :miff:
     
  17. Roering

    Roering Sorting nuts

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    If you get caught just say you're holding it for a friend.
     
  18. Heckler&Koch

    Heckler&Koch

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    I took out the passenger seat to install a keg.
     
  19. RWBlue

    RWBlue Mr. CISSP, CISA CLM

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  20. VELO

    VELO

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    Can one stop by a bar on the way home from work, have one beer and still be unimpaired and legal to drive their vehicle?

    Why can't you just have that one beer while on the way home?

    Stupid law made to make people feel better. If one doesn't have the self-control to not drive drunk, it doesn't matter where the drinking happens.

    If one *does* have the self control to not drive drunk, it still doesn't matter where the drinking happens.

    The laws also make it illegal for a group of guys heading to a ball game or something like that to designate a non-drinking driver while enjoying a couple of cold ones on the way.

    Just a dumb law IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2012