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Handy Study Guide

The Really Good Handy Study Guide

These are the laws most likely to be on the DMV test!

A. Right of Way

  1. At an intersection, the right of way belongs to the vehicle entering the intersection first.
  2. When two cars arrive at an intersection at the same time from different directions, the right of way belongs to the car on the right.
  3. When turning left the right of way belongs to oncoming straight traffic.
  4. A blind person carrying a white cane must be given the right of way.
  5. On a narrow mountain road the right of way belongs to the car going uphill.
  6. A pedestrian has the right of way at all times even at a corner without marked crosswalks.
  7. A pedestrian has the right of way where a driveway or alley crosses a sidewalk.
  8. If a pedestrian is crossing in the middle of the block (J walking) you do not have the right to run over him.
  9. A good safety rule even when you are sure you have the right way is to never insist on it. “Don’t be dead right!”
  10. Uncontrolled Intersection same right of ways as a 4 way stop.

B. Traffic Signals and Lights

  1. Flashing red light means stop and proceed with caution.
  2. A flashing yellow light at an intersection means slow to 15mph and approach with caution
  3. A flashing yellow on a sign, means that is important to read and understand the sign.
  4. If a School Bus is showing a flashing red light STOP! And proceed only when the lights stop flashing.
  5. If a wig wag or flashing signal is operating at a railroad crossing you must stop, and proceed only when safe.
  6. If a stop sign is at the corner you must stop completely before entering the crosswalk.
  7. When a second stop sign is on a divider strip of a divided highway, you must stop again at the second stop sign.
  8. A  right turn against a red light is permitted after you have stopped and no sign is posted prohibiting it, and it is safe to do so.
  9. A left turn against a red light, is permitted after you have stopped, and no sign is posted prohibiting it from a one way street into another one way street in which traffic moves to the left.
  10. If a Policeman or Fireman tells you to go even against a red traffic signal , do as he tells you.
  11. On hearing a police, fire or ambulance siren pull over to the right clear of any intersection and stop.

C. Lane Use

  1. Left turns from a two-way street should be made from the lane nearest to the center of the street.
  2. Right turns should begin and finish from the lane nearest the right curb.
  3. On a three-lane highway the center lane is for left turns only and not for passing unless posted.
  4. Law forbids passing to the right by using the unpaved shoulder of the road. If the shoulder is paved and not in an intersection you can pass on the right if you can do so safely.
  5. Driving on the shoulder of the highway or Freeway if it is in safe condition, is allowed when you need to drive so slow as to block or impede traffic.
  6. When stopping on the highway or freeway other than is required by traffic, you should stop off of the pavement if possible.
  7. A solid double line means no crossing over to pass another car. However you may pass if it is safe and the line on your side is broken. Left turns are usually permitted over a single double line.
  8. A special lane in the middle of a two-way street marked by broken double lines on each side of the lane may be used for beginning and ending left turns only, and U-Turns when safe.

D. Accidents

  1. With parked vehicles: The law requires that you leave a note on or in the car with full information.
  2. Under $750 does not have to be reported. Decision of guilt lies between the two parties. That should be a lot of fun!
  3. Over $750 must be reported to the police whether it was your fault or not.
  4. If a human being is involved (injured): Must be reported to the police within 24 hours, and to the DMV within 10 days.
  5. If you hit a dog, you must inform the humane society or the police. Leaving the scene could result in a hit and run offense. Leaving a note on the dog is just plain wrong!

E. Curb Markings

  1. Red: No stopping, parking or standing
  2. Green: Parking for a limited time
  3. White: Loading or unloading Passengers only
  4. Yellow: Loading or unloading freight or passengers
  5. Blue: Disabled parking with an official placard or license plate.

F. Parking

  1. Parallel Parking the front and rear wheels must be no more than 18 inches from the curb.
  2. Double Parking is forbidden by law. This means parking alongside another car that is already parked at the curb.
  3. Uphill parking: turn the front wheels to the left away from the curb.
  4. Downhill parking: Turn the front wheels to the right  towards the curb.
  5. Fire Hydrant Parking is forbidden by law. No parking within 15 feet, on either side.

G. Arm Signals

  1. Right turn: arm up
  2. Left turn: Arm extended straight out
  3. Stopping or slowing: Arm out and down
  4. Minimum distance for signaling is 100 feet (about two houses)
  5. On bright sunny days it is considered safer to use electrical and hand and arms signals.
  6. Obscene and threatening gestures, can create road rage, get you shot or if you are lucky just a ticket for aggressive driving.

H. Vehicle Lights

  1. Parking Lights alone are forbidden when driving. You must always drive at night with your main headlights on.
  2. Dimming headlights or lowering the lights beams is required when an oncoming vehicle is within 500 feet and when following another vehicle within 300 feet.
  3. If blinded by headlights from oncoming cars keep your eyes low and to the right side of the road.
  4. In fog or rain it is best to use your low beam headlights.
  5. You must drive with your low beam headlights on whenever your windshield wipers are in continuous use.

I. Freeways

  1. On entering, the traffic already on the freeway has the right of way.
  2. The acceleration lane or on ramp is for accelerating up to the flow of traffic. The closer your speeds match the easier the merge.
  3. Ample following distance between you and the car ahead is of special importance because stopping distances are greater at higher speeds.
  4. Most Collisions on the freeways are caused by following too close or unsafe lane changes. Driving in another driver’s blind spot is a stupid practice.

J. Speed Limits

  1. 15 MPH  blind uncontrolled intersections, blind railroad crossings without electrical signals or gates and blind alley ways. Some school zones are also posted at 15 MPH.
  2. 25 MPH Business district (city limits) residential, School Zone
  3. 3. 55 MPH Car towing trailer, Trucks (ha ha) undivided open highway unless otherwise posted.
  4. 4. 65 MPH divided open highways and freeways
  5. BASIC SPEED LAW states that you may never driver faster than what is safe for conditions. Weather, Visibility road.
  6. Prima Facie Speed Law says you should stay at the posted speed limit if it is safe to do so.
  7. Keeping up with the flow of traffic usually means you are speeding, since the flow is usually about 5 or 10 Mph over the speed limit.
  8. Driving too slow can be just as unsafe as driving too fast.
  9. If you are arrested for driving faster than the posted 65 MPH speed limit, you can be found guilty, whether or not you thought it was safe.
  10. 70 MPH on specially designated freeways in rural areas  only when posted.

K. Safe Driving Practices

  1. Braking Distance for a vehicle traveling 50 MPH on a dry road is at least 200 feet.
  2. Following Distance is considered safe with a 3 second difference between you and the car in front.
  3. Overtaking…when another car is in the act of passing you on the left, the law forbids that you increase your speed.
  4. If a car ahead has stopped at a crosswalk to let someone walk across, you should stop and only proceed when safe
  5. Skidding..if your car skids it is best not to slam on the brakes and try to steer into the direction the car is skidding
  6. Parked vehicles: The law requires that you stop the engine and set the parking brake.
  7. A car parked on a public street, that is not running or being Used, must still be currently registered.
  8. Opening car doors on the traffic side is only permitted when you can do so without affecting passing traffic.
  9. Pedestrians walking with no sidewalks on highways may now walk on whichever side they feel is safest.
  10. Disconnecting the smog control device is forbidden by law
  11. Towing more than one trailer by a passenger car is forbidden by law.
  12. When towing a trailer which blocks your view to the rear, the law says you must have mirrors on both the left and right side of your vehicle.
  13. An outside rear view mirror is required on the left side of your car in addition to an inside mirror.
  14. SPEEDING AND TAILGATING are the two worst practices you can do as a driver(even nice drivers do it). It does not save much time on short trips, and it increases your chance of a collision, How many people like to ride with a tailgater? ZERO!
  15. Everybody likes to think they are really good drivers. 85% of men, and 75% of women (they are more honest) think they are better than average. The truth is that the average driver is only half as good as they should be.
  16. If you speed and tailgate you cannot be a defensive driver.
  17. If you scare your passengers you are not a good driver.
  18. If you are riding with someone and do not feel the need to help them, and are enjoying the ride then you are probably riding with a better than average driver. GREAT!
  19. Riding with a reckless or scary driver is really stupid, don’t do it! Do eyery one a favor: complain about bad or reckless driving behavior. Most passengers don’t.
  20. No one has the right to drive like an idiot!

This Study Guide is Provided by Sunshine Driving School and Ken Cornelius (805) 646-2113


"They taught me to drive like a champ!"
-Tobias Tune

"Thanks to Sunshine Driving School I aced my drivers test on the first try...with compliments from the examiner for avoiding and accident with remarkable reflexes!"
-Akka B, Poet

Oakland "This man taught me to drive when I first came to this country. Triple AAA+++, thank you Ken, for all your safe driving tips and your patience with me. Now I love to drive!"
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"Ken is a great teacher. I was only 26 years old when I took his program. I had just come from New York and had never needed a car. Ken's instruction insured that I became a safe and happy driver! Thanks Ken!"
-Marilyn Mosley-Goranier: Educator, Ojai

"Ken taught me to drive in a month and a half at age 32. He also taught both of my children to drive. My daughter went on to drive buses while attending U.C. Santa Cruz. He is the best!"
-Jessica Watling-Murray

If you want to learn to drive this is the place to call! The skills you will gain will last a l lifetime. I have proof!
-Asha Tyska McLaughlin

"My daughter was 21 and was too scared to learn to drive. Sunshine Driving School was the only place where she felt safe enough to learn. Now she's a confident and safe driver. Thank you!"
-Debbie Godfrey, self employed

Ken and Sunshine Driving School were the best things that could have happened to me during learning to drive experience. After a horrible set of lessons from another local driving school, after which I vowed I would never drive again, Ken reestablished my confidence in my driving abilities. His calm demeanor assured me that I was always safe, and his encouragement (and occasional humor) helped me learn in a positive and constructive way. Folks, Ken is undoubtedly one of the best driving teachers out there. His experience shows in every lesson and interaction. It was a pleasure and honor to learn how to drive from Ken, especially after encountering the worst. Heck, I even passed my test first try!

I hope that this suffices! I could probably write you an in-depth 5 page paper if you really wanted it. I'm thinking a catchy title would be: KEN CORNELIUS, PRAISE BE UNTO HIM! :) hahaha.

I hope that you and all of your family is doing well. I recommend you to EVERYONE! Truly!

Best wishes always,
Olivia, Thacher Student

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229 East Villanova Rd. Ojai, CA 93023

Tel: (8O5) 646-2113
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