Washington, DC asked in Traffic Tickets for Maryland

Q: Is ta 21-1001(b) moving violation in Maryland?

I left my car running and entered to buy a coffee. When I returned an officer cited me for leaving my car running. I just want to know if I could just pay the fine$60, if it is not a moving violation. Thanks

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2 Lawyer Answers
Scott Scherr
Scott Scherr
  • Traffic Tickets Lawyer
  • Towson, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: It is not a moving violation and does not carry points. The statute states that "(b) Except as otherwise provided in this section, on any highway outside of a business district or a residential district, a person may not leave any vehicle standing, without providing an unobstructed width of the roadway opposite the standing vehicle for the free passage of other vehicles." You would have to look at where you were parked to see if the statute was violated.

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The violation you describe is 21-1101, not 21-1001 (which is a similar offense but without the engine running), and it carries 1 point in addition to the fine, so if charged under this section, you should request a trial (not a waiver hearing); however, if the officer made a mistake and charged you under 21-1001, then there is no point assessed. 21-1101 provides as follows:

(a) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, a person driving or otherwise in charge of a motor vehicle may not leave it unattended until the engine is stopped, the ignition locked, the key removed, and the brake effectively set.

Vehicles on grades

(b) A person driving or otherwise in charge of a motor vehicle may not leave the motor vehicle unattended until, if the vehicle is on a grade, the front wheels are turned to the curb or side of the highway.

(c)(1) When a cat or dog is left in the unattended vehicle of an on-duty law enforcement officer or an animal control officer, the provisions of subsection (a) of this section do not apply to the law enforcement officer or the animal control officer.

(2) Subsection (a) of this section does not apply to a person who:

(i) Is in charge of a motor vehicle that has had the engine started using a remote keyless ignition system and has been operating unattended for up to 5 consecutive minutes when the vehicle is not in motion; or

(ii) Allows a motor vehicle that is locked and is on private property not open to the public to operate unattended for up to 5 consecutive minutes when the vehicle is not in motion.

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