Austin Transportation Department, in partnership with the Austin Police Department (APD) and Austin Municipal Court, announce a change to the way failure to yield crashes with injuries are documented by APD officers. Recipients of failure to yield citations involved in crashes with injuries must now appear in court rather than being allowed to pay a fine without a prosecutor’s involvement.
Aligned with the City of Austin's Vision Zero goal of eliminating traffic injuries and fatalities, individuals who receive a citation for a failure to yield collision resulting in bodily injuries will now be mandated to review their case with a prosecutor and will no longer be able to pay their citation online or at a ticket window at the Municipal Court. These crashes resulting in any severity of bodily injury are subject to higher minimum and maximum charges, up to $4,000 in the case of serious bodily injury (per Texas Transportation Code §542.4045).
“Failure to yield is one of the top four contributing factors in serious injury and fatal crashes in Austin” said Robert Spillar, Director of Austin Transportation. “Last year, failure to yield was a contributing factor in 16 percent of fatal and serious injury crashes. Crashes of all types caused by failure to yield forever change the lives of the people involved, as well as their family members and friends,” he said.
By working with partner City departments to update the process for failure to yield citations tied to injury crashes to reflect higher fine amounts and requiring a court appearance, Austin Transportation’s Vision Zero program continues its focus on impacting driver behaviors that can lead to serious injury or death. Examples of failing to yield the right of way include drivers in vehicles not yielding for people walking in a crosswalk and drivers turning left across an oncoming vehicle’s path.