Here are common driving and parking mistakes that could cost you on Wichita roads




  • In US
  • 2022-12-01 11:26:00Z
  • By Wichita Eagle

Wichita police continue to crack down on bad drivers, issuing thousands of tickets each year for motorists who don't follow traffic laws.

Last year, employees of the city of Wichita wrote more than 35,000 tickets for moving and parking violations ranging from speeding and driving under the influence to texting while driving and not buckling up. The Wichita Eagle looked at 2021 traffic ticket data from Wichita Municipal Court to find out what road rules drivers break most.

Here are 12 common mistakes that cost drivers on Wichita's streets and the fines associated with those violations. Tickets may be issued for more than one violation. The fine amounts and other information come from the city's fee schedule for moving and parking violations, city ordinance and state law. Costs can be higher if a person chooses to contest a citation in Wichita Municipal Court rather than pay it.

To see individual tickets issued by the Wichita Police Department and other city workers for any traffic violation in 2021, check out The Eagle's searchable database at www.kansas.com/databases.

1. Speeding over the limit.

Most people think that driving a few miles over the posted speed limit won't get them a ticket. But officially, law enforcement can pull you over and cite you for going even one mile per hour too fast. That doesn't happen very often, though.

Tickets issued in 2021: 17,589 (this number doesn't include other speed-related offenses, such as speeding in a construction or school zone)

Fine: $76.50 for 1 mph over. After that, the penalty increases $5 per mile.

5 mph over - $96.50

10 mph over - $121.50

20 mph over - $171.50

50 mph over - $321.50

Violators caught most often at: 8000 W. 21st St., near the Sedgwick County Zoo and Sedgwick County Park

2. Parking meter violations on streets and city lots

If you park at meters on the streets or city lots, make sure you have coins to feed into them and don't go over time.

Street meter parking is enforced from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. except on Sundays and legal holidays, according to city ordinance; metered parking on lots is enforced during hours indicated on the meter. If you're the registered owner of a vehicle that you've loaned to someone else, be aware you could end up with a parking ticket if they break meter rules.

Tickets issued in 2021: 4,506

Fine: $25. If you don't pay within 10 days, the fine increases to $35.

Violators caught most often at: Wichita City Hall, 455 N. Main

3. Driving on a suspended, revoked, canceled or fraudulent license

In Kansas, it's against the law to drive without a valid license. You can lose driving privileges for several reasons, including driving under the influence, not showing proof of insurance, unpaid fines, having too many moving violations in a year and if you're responsible for a traffic death.

Tickets issued in 2021: 2,351

Fine: Requires a court appearance. Penalties vary. Driving with a canceled, suspended or revoked license is a misdemeanor crime that generally carries a fine of $100 to $1,500 for a first conviction and possible jail time. Additional convictions cost more.

Violators caught most often at: 900 W. 13th St., in North Riverside near Minisa Park

4. No proof of insurance

Everyone who owns a vehicle is required by law to carry motor vehicle liability insurance and keep a current record of it handy. If you can't show it to a law enforcement officer who stopped you, you risk getting a "no proof of insurance" ticket.

Tickets issued in 2021: 1,957

Fine: If you have valid liability insurance when you're ticketed and show proof within 10 days, there's no charge. If you don't have insurance, you have to show up in court. Driving without liability insurance is a misdemeanor crime that is subject to a fine of $300 to $1,000 and up to six months in jail. Subsequent convictions cost more.

Violators caught most often at: 8000 W. 21st St., near the Sedgwick County Zoo and Sedgwick County Park

5. Tags that are expired or illegal for other reasons

Most people who were ticketed for this drove with expired tags. But police can also cite you if your license plate is defaced or isn't affixed to the back of your car (there are a few exceptions to rear placement, such as truck tractors and antique vehicles), or if you're using one that's registered to another vehicle.

Tickets issued in 2021: 1,538

Fine: $106.50 for license tag violations.

Violators caught most often at: 12th and Hillside, just south of 13th

6. Not having your valid driver's license with you

Even if you have a valid license, you can still get a ticket if you don't take it with you when you drive. Luckily, there's a no-cost fix if you forget yours.

Tickets issued in 2021: 1,298

Fine: No charge if you have a valid driver's license at the time the ticket is issued and you show proof of it. Other scenarios require a court appearance.

Violators caught most often at: 4500 E. 13th St., west of Oliver

7. Breaking the 30 mph speed limit on residential and city streets

The speed limit in Wichita city limits is 30 mph on all streets, unless there is a sign indicating otherwise. You can get a ticket for going over 30 mph, even if there is no sign. This includes residential neighborhoods.

Tickets issued in 2021: 941

Fine: It's the same as other speeding violations - $76.50 for 1 mph over plus $5 for each additional mile.

Violators caught most often at: 900 W. 13th St., in North Riverside near Minisa Park

8. Running a red light of any sort

Running a solid or flashing red traffic light can earn you a ticket, regardless of the circumstances. This includes when a driver doesn't stop before proceeding with a right-hand turn and when a driver with a green arrow on a steady red doesn't follow the direction indicated.

If you're in an intersection before the light turns red, it's not running a red light.

Tickets issued in 2021: 877

Fine: $176.50.

Violators caught most often at: First and Washington in Old Town

9. Driving under the influence

People most often think of drunken driving as driving under the influence. But it also includes other impairments such as illicit drugs or prescription medications. In Kansas, it's illegal to drive if the alcohol concentration in your breath or blood is .08 or more.

Tickets issued in 2021: 810

Fine: Driving under the influence is a misdemeanor crime and is a bookable offense, meaning you can be taken to jail. Penalties vary depending how many times you've been convicted. The fine for a first offense is $750 to $1,000 in addition to the jail time or probation. The fine for a second offense is at least $1,250 and at least $1,750 for a third offense, plus possible jail time.

Violators caught most often at: the intersection of east Kellogg Drive and South Oliver

10. Inattentive driving

This covers any behavior that takes proper attention away from the road when you drive, including fiddling with electronic devices, tending to kids, applying makeup and turning to talk to someone in the backseat. Texting while driving is a separate category that Wichita police used to ticket 67 drivers last year.

Tickets issued in 2021: 762

Fine: $131.50

Violators caught most often at: Rock Road and K-96 and 3000 N. Maize, near 29th St. North.

11. Parking too long in Old Town

The city has the authority to say how long someone can park in its lots and on streets in Wichita's entertainment district, Old Town. You can get a ticket if you leave your vehicle longer. There are signs posted that designate the time limits.

Tickets issued in 2021: 528

Fine: $25. If you don't pay within 10 days, it increases to $35.

Violations caught most often at: 100 N. Mead, north of Douglas

12. Failing to yield right-of-way when turning left

Police can cite you if you don't yield to oncoming vehicles when you make a left-hand turn across traffic.

Tickets issued in 2021: 523

Fine: $121.50

Violators caught most often at: 21st and Woodlawn

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