ASK A COP — Is it legal to drive in reverse if it’s for short distances?

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, December 8, 2020

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Bren from Port Arthur asks: Officer Antoine, I have a vehicle that has a transmission problem and sometimes when I get in it, the gear won’t go into drive but reverse works just fine. Let me say this first, I’m very skilled at reverse driving. I I get in my car and the transmission is acting up and won’t go into drive, can I take it home in reverse if it’s not too far away?


Answer: I’m sorry but this is hilarious to me, because I’ve had transmission problems before and that very same thought popped into my head, but I didn’t do it. I’m sure almost everyone reading this has had vehicle maintenance problems, so they can relate to having car problems. Bren, I’m sorry to inform you that driving on the roadway in reverse is not permitted in the state of Texas. Your vehicle is not fit to be on the roads of Texas until you have your transmission properly repaired. Driving in reverse is not allowed, and if you find yourself in an area on the roadway where your vehicle won’t shift into drive, call a tow truck.

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Jason from Port Neches asks: I’m a licensed carrier of a weapon in the state of Texas and we are within worldwide pandemic COVID-19, where just about everywhere you go a face covering or mask is required. Since the masks have been made mandatory I have not worn my weapon openly; it’s always concealed. Can I wear my weapon open carry if I choose to while I wear a mask or is it illegal to have a face covering while openly carrying a weapon in the state of Texas?


Answer: The state of Texas has not restricted the licensed open carrying of weapons since the onset of the pandemic. Nor is there a law in Texas that restricts the open carrying of a weapon with a face covering/mask. I will suggest you or anyone licensed to carry who chooses to carry openly while wearing a mask to prepare yourselves because you will be getting several strange looks. So, Jason, at this point in time you’re allowed to openly carry your weapon in the state of Texas if you’re licensed.


Yeah Margarette from Bridge City asks: I find some information that is not touched upon is the AARP driving classes for seniors. I have two questions from some of your recent answers, (1st) you mentioned a minimum speed limit on Highway 69, I haven’t seen a sign giving that information. My 2nd question is about setting the parking brake. I was of the understanding that putting the car in park mode was the same as putting the parking brake in standard shift cars. Is the park position on the automatic transmission cars the same as the parking brake?


Answer: There are no minimum speed limit signs posted on Highway 69. In the recent past, there was a minimum speed limit sign on highways in Texas, and it was 45 mph. I still today hold to that standard. The Texas Transportation Code 545.363 states an operator may not drive so slowly as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic, except when reduced speed is necessary for safe operation or in compliance with law. The posted speed limit on Highway 69 is 75 mph. If in optimum conditions you are not traveling at least 45 mph in the RIGHT lane, you will be impeding the traffic flow. Texas Transportation Code 545.404(a)(4) states upon leaving a vehicle unattended, a driver must effectively set the parking brake. Whether in a standard or automatic transmission, vehicle drivers must set the parking brake once exiting a vehicle that’s unattended.


Join Officer Rickey Antoine for Ask A Cop Live on KSAP 96.9 FM every Tuesday from 1 to 2 p.m. as he discusses the Ask A Cop article. You can tune in at Call in and ask a question live at 409-982-0247.