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December 18, 2011 | By Scott J. Wilson, Los Angeles Times
How well do you know traffic laws? Can you wear headphones while driving? Can you drive barefoot? Must you turn your headlights on when your windshield wipers are on? Here's a look at five laws you might not know: • Earplugs: It's illegal in California to drive or bicycle while wearing "a headset covering, or earplugs in, both ears. " Exceptions are made for drivers of emergency vehicles and trash trucks, or anyone using "earplugs or molds that are specifically designed to attenuate injurious noise levels.
April 11, 2014 | By Jim Peltz
No matter where he starts Sunday's race, veteran IndyCar driver Tony Kanaan believes he is sitting pretty. Kanaan, a fan favorite who won the Indianapolis 500 for the first time last year, was hired by the powerhouse team of Target Chip Ganassi Racing this year. The 39-year-old Brazilian took over the car formerly driven by his good friend Dario Franchitti, the four-time IndyCar champion who retired after being seriously hurt in a crash in Houston last October. Kanaan qualified second and finished sixth in the season opener March 30 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla., and Sunday's Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach will be his second race driving Ganassi's No. 10 car. Kanaan has never won Long Beach and his best finish in 10 starts was third in 2009.
March 4, 2011 | By Chris Erskine, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
In Las Vegas, you can lose even before you hit the tables. The city’s cabbies are notorious for taking longer routes than usual, adding a good $10 to your $15 fare. You can protest, of course. But who wants to start a fun weekend escape with a fight? Well, you do, unless you like giving money away. I got taken for a ride on a recent trip from McCarran International Airport to the Orleans Hotel & Casino . Learn from my mistake. Here’s the most important tip: If you’re going from the airport to the Strip or downtown, your cabbie should not take you on the freeway.
April 11, 2014 | By Dan Weikel and Ralph Vartabedian
State and federal investigators probing the cause of the fiery collision between a FedEx big rig and a charter bus in Northern California will delve into a wide range of factors from the health and rest of the truck driver to emergency exits and fire protection for bus passengers. "This is a very significant and unfortunate tragedy," said Jim Hall, a transportation safety consultant and former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board. "The NTSB is going to have its hands full on this one. " Although the cause of the accident has yet to be determined, Hall and other safety advocates say it could focus new attention on the NTSB's efforts to improve bus safety and the behind-the-scenes battle over safety standards for motor coaches and other commercial vehicles.
November 8, 2012 | By Deborah Netburn
Texting and driving? It's against the law in 39 states - including California - but that hasn't stopped many of us from reaching for the phone while we're on the road. About 100,000 people are texting and driving at any given moment, according to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. And more than 1 million accidents this year have been caused by distracted drivers, many of them while texting. Still, the chime of a new text message is enticing and the urge to look at it is almost Pavlovian.
October 31, 2013 | By Laura E. Davis
Hey, ladies, the Beijing police department apparently doesn't think you're very good at driving. So they've singled you out to receive some, um, advice for when you get behind the wheel. Messages posted by the department on China's Twitter-like site Weibo reportedly have caused an uproar and are being labeled gender discrimination. Here's a sampling of the guidance: "Some female drivers lack a sense of direction. While driving, they often can't decide which road they should take .… Even for places they've been to several times, they still can't remember how to get there when driving themselves.” Women also might hit the brakes or the accelerator too sharply or forget to release the handbrake, the messages warn.
June 21, 2013 | By Catherine Green
Nissan Leaf drivers throughout the U.S. will be able to upgrade to the latest lithium-ion batteries through a program costing $100 a month, the automaker announced Thursday. Nissan's current policy guarantees it will fix or replace Leaf EV battery packs which fail to meet performance standards during the first five years of ownership or before 60,000 miles. Under the new program, starting early next year, drivers of the 2011, 2012 or 2013 models will be able to get a new battery installed in their vehicles.
June 29, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
By day, Jimmy Lucia is an actor. By night, he roams the streets of Los Angeles as BatLyft. Cruising in his blue 2013 Kia Rio hatchback, Batman-masked Lucia picks up strangers and takes them wherever they want to go. On a Friday or Saturday night, Lucia will transport as many as 60 people. But while Lucia's a nice guy, he doesn't give them a lift for free. He is one of hundreds of actors, musicians and filmmakers who are making extra cash with their cars by hooking up as drivers with ride-sharing firm Lyft.
October 1, 2013 | By Paul Thornton
Can Los Angeles be a city for cyclists? That's the question The Times asked in its editorial Sunday kicking off its weeks-long exploration of changing transportation priorities. Readers, especially on Facebook , gave us an earful -- and it was, should we say, spirited. The first comment -- "NEVER!" -- set the tone for much of this particular thread, in which the conventional rules on capitalization were not infrequently violated. One piqued reader wrote the following comment -- in original punctuation and capitalization -- further down in the Facebook thread: "Here we go!
March 14, 2013 | By Geoffrey Mohan
OMG!  Far more Americans use a cellphone and text while behind the wheel than their European counterparts, the Centers for Disease Control and Preventionreported. Nearly a third of U.S. drivers aged 18 to 64 admitted they had read or sent a text message while driving during a 30-day period, compared with 15% in Spain, according to a CDC weekly morbidity and mortality report. Portugal tied the U.S. in texting, at 31%, according to the report. And more than two-thirds of Americans admitted they gabbed on cellphones while driving, compared with a low of 21% in Britain.
April 10, 2014 | By Jim Peltz
The 40th running of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach is Sunday with one overarching question: Who can put the brakes on Will Power? The 33-year-old Australian has won the last three Verizon IndyCar Series races, and four of the last six, going back to last season. Power's latest victory in his No. 12 Team Penske car was a dominant one at IndyCar's season opener March 30 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla. Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Course Map Power also knows his way around the seaside streets that make up the 11-turn, 1.97-mile Long Beach course.
April 7, 2014 | By Los Angeles Times Staff
A 26-year-old Santa Ana man has been charged with the murder of a 12-year-old girl who died when the suspect allegedly slammed into her family's car during a high-speed chase, the Orange County District Attorney's office said. Aleksander Apostoloic, charged with killing the girl and injuring her brother and mother, is set to be arraigned Monday afternoon. Apostoloic has been charged with murder, aggravated assault, hit-and-run driving, evading arrest and residential burglary, according to the Orange County District Attorney's office.
April 6, 2014 | By Brett Berk
My Grandma Bobbie is 93 and lives on her own, in a spotless condo decorated with enviable midcentury furnishings. The daughter of a General Motors millwright, she grew up in Detroit riding the streetcar, but one of her goals was to get to the promised land - the suburbs - and preferably by car. For my grandmother, like many older people in her cohort, a car is not only a convenience or a luxury - though it is that; Grandma loved Lincolns and Cadillacs...
March 31, 2014 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
DARRINGTON, Wash. - Before the catastrophic landslide killed at least 24 people and severed the main highway out of town, it took about 30 minutes to drive from this mountain community west to Arlington. Now that State Route 530 is blocked by debris up to 70 feet high - including mangled cars compacted to the size of small refrigerators - it can take three hours. Aside from a lengthy northern detour, intrepid drivers can use Mountain Loop Highway, a harrowing, rutted road that saves an hour but can take at least that much time off your life.
March 23, 2014 | By Nita Lelyveld
One day, David Harwell's car will come. An industry bigwig will drive by the corner of La Cienega and 3rd. He'll be discovered. He'll live his Hollywood dream. Harwell feels it in his bones as he moonwalks in front of a mini-mall. He knows it as he swivels his arrow-shaped sign that reads: "CHECKS CASHED, MoneyGram, CURRENCY EXCHANGE. " When a Starline Tours bus barrels down the boulevard, passing the Beverly Center and heading his way, he steps into the street and shimmies toward the people holding up cellphones on the upper deck.
March 21, 2014 | By James Rainey
A string of actions by state officials and the National Labor Relations Board has strengthened the hand of truck drivers who say they need union representation to improve pay and working conditions for the thousands who transport cargo out of the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. In a settlement this week, one major trucking company agreed to post notices acknowledging the workers' right to organize - not previously a given because drivers were treated as contract workers, who are not subject to unionization.
August 14, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Last April, the Los Angeles Police Department adopted a new approach to the problem of unlicensed drivers, many of whom are barred from ever obtaining a license because of their immigration status. Under the rule, known as Special Order 7, police officers are authorized to impound the cars of unlicensed drivers (as they always have been), but those drivers who have no prior violations and can provide proof of insurance may retrieve their cars as soon as they pay the impound fees, rather than waiting 30 days.
September 4, 2013 | By Paresh Dave
Like many Southern California residents, I resisted ever hailing a taxi. The region's traffic and sprawl hinted at exorbitant fares. Figuring out whom to call and then waiting on hold to order a cab added to my reluctance. But now with a smartphone, I've found ordering a taxi has actually become inviting. Anxious waits have been eliminated because you can track a taxi's journey to you on a digital map. Estimating fares, paying them, leaving tips and getting receipts can all be completed through an app. People who avoid taxis because they consider them scary or their drivers frustrating also have easy smartphone options.
March 17, 2014 | By Joe Mozingo
A Van Nuys man survived two nights in a canyon north of Castaic Lake after the pickup he was riding in plunged 250 feet off a winding mountain road, officials said. The 65-year-old driver of the 1995 GMC Sierra was killed, according to a report from the California Highway Patrol. His name was not released, pending notification of next of kin. The survivor, Alvaro Avila, 39, of Van Nuys, suffered a broken pelvis and internal injuries to his torso. Both men were wearing seat belts.
March 15, 2014 | By Richard Verrier
In a climactic car-chase scene in the new movie "Need for Speed," a race car barrels into the back of a police SUV, sending the truck flying through the air. To put viewers in the drivers' seats, director Scott Waugh placed cameras inside the SUV so they could feel the sensation of the truck rotating in the air. He positioned cameras on the head of the stunt driver maneuvering the vehicle that collides with the SUV, and in the car driven by Tobey...
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