Article 8. Signs of California Vehicle Code >> Division 12. >> Chapter 5. >> Article 8.
(a) Every motor vehicle or combination of vehicles used to
carry the property of others for hire or used to carry passengers for
hire, any truck or truck tractor having three or more axles or any
truck tractor with a semitrailer, and all commercial motor vehicles,
as defined in subdivision (c) of Section 34601, shall have displayed
on both sides of each vehicle or on both sides of one of the vehicles
in each combination of vehicles the name or trademark of the person
under whose authority the vehicle or combination of vehicles is being
(b) A vehicle or combination of vehicles listed in subdivision (a)
that is operated under a rental agreement with a term of not more
than 30 calendar days shall meet all of the following requirements:
(1) Have displayed on both sides of each vehicle or on both sides
of one of the vehicles in each combination of vehicles the name or
trademark of the lessor.
(2) Have displayed on both sides of each vehicle or on both sides
of one of the vehicles in each combination of vehicles any of the
following numbers issued to the lessor:
(A) The carrier identification number issued by the United States
Department of Transportation.
(B) A valid operating authority number.
(C) A valid motor carrier of property number.
(3) (A) Have in the vehicle or combination of vehicles a copy of
the rental agreement entered into by the lessor and the vehicle
(B) The rental agreement shall be available for inspection
immediately upon the request of any authorized employee of the
department or any regularly employed and salaried police officer or
deputy sheriff, or any reserve police officer or reserve deputy
sheriff listed in Section 830.6 of the Penal Code.
(C) If the rented vehicle or combination of vehicles is operated
in conjunction with a commercial enterprise, the rental agreement
shall include the operator's carrier identification number or motor
carrier of property permit number.
(c) A vehicle or combination of vehicles that is in compliance
with Section 390.21 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations
shall be deemed to be in compliance with subdivision (b).
(d) All names, trademarks, and other identifiers for companies no
longer in business, no longer operating with the same name, or no
longer operating under the same operating authority, shall be removed
from or covered over on every motor vehicle or combination of
vehicles listed in subdivision (a), within 60 days from the change of
company ownership or operation. Those vehicles or combinations of
vehicles shall be remarked pursuant to subdivision (a) before they
may be operated on the highways.
The display of the name or trademark shall be in letters in
sharp contrast to the background and shall be of such size, shape,
and color as to be readily legible during daylight hours from a
distance of 50 feet.
This section does not prohibit additional displays not
inconsistent with this article.
Section 27900 does not apply to any motor vehicle having an
unladen weight of 6,000 pounds or less or to any vehicle towed by
such motor vehicles, or to any motor vehicle operating under
manufacturers, dealers, or transporters special plates, or to any
motor vehicle operated by a passenger stage corporation subject to
the jurisdiction of the Public Utilities Commission.
(a) Subject to Section 114765 of the Health and Safety Code,
any vehicle transporting any explosive, blasting agent, flammable
liquid, flammable solid, oxidizing material, corrosive, compressed
gas, poison, radioactive material, or other hazardous materials, of
the type and in quantities that require the display of placards or
markings on the vehicle exterior by the United States Department of
Transportation regulations (49 C.F.R., Parts 172, 173, and 177),
shall display the placards and markings in the manner and under
conditions prescribed by those regulations of the United States
Department of Transportation.
(b) This section does not apply to the following:
(1) Any vehicle transporting not more than 20 pounds of smokeless
powder or not more than five pounds of black sporting powder or any
(2) An authorized emergency vehicle as defined in paragraph (1) of
subdivision (b) of Section 165, operated by a peace officer as
defined in Sections 830.1 and 830.2 of the Penal Code, when
transportation is required within the scope and course of law
enforcement explosives detection or removal duties, provided one of
the following conditions applies:
(A) The law enforcement agency operating the vehicle complies with
regulations adopted by the California Highway Patrol pursuant to
subdivision (b) of Section 34501, notwithstanding Section 34500 and
subdivision (a) of Section 34501.
(B) The peace officer possesses an exemption issued by the
commissioner, who may require additional transportation restrictions
as deemed appropriate.
There shall be displayed in a conspicuous place on both the
right and left sides of a pilot car a sign showing the name of the
company which owns or operates the pilot car. The name shall contrast
with the background and shall be of a size, shape, and color as to
be readily legible during daylight hours from a distance of 50 feet.
Additional markings which do not interfere with the legibility of the
name may also be displayed.
Subject to Section 35783.5, a pilot car shall display
neat, clean, and legible signs containing the word "OVERSIZE." The
words "OVERSIZE LOAD," "WIDE LOAD," or "LONG LOAD" may be substituted
as applicable. The sign shall be a minimum of 48 inches above the
ground and shall be legible at 45 degrees from either side when read
from the front or rear. The sign shall have a bright yellow
background with a minimum projected area of 440 square inches. The
lettering shall be black with a 1-inch minimum brush stroke width and
a 6-inch minimum letter height.
It is unlawful to display on a vehicle any sign with the
words "fire" or "fire department" thereon, except on vehicles owned
and operated by a regularly organized fire department, fire district,
forestry service, or the State Fire Marshal's Office, and on the
privately owned vehicles of any regular member of any such fire
(a) Every schoolbus, while being used for the transportation
of school pupils at or below the 12th-grade level shall bear upon
the front and rear of the bus a plainly visible sign containing the
word "schoolbus" in letters not less than eight inches in height. The
letters on schoolbus signs shall be of proportionate width.
Except as provided in subdivision (b), no other vehicle shall
display a sign containing the word "schoolbus."
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), a schoolbus which is also
used to transport persons of any age who are developmentally
disabled, as defined by the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities
Services Act (Division 4.5 (commencing with Section 4500) of the
Welfare and Institutions Code), may display a sign containing the
word "schoolbus" while transporting those persons to or from
vocational, prevocational, or work training centers sponsored by the
State Department of Developmental Services.
(c) Every schoolbus, when operated for the transportation of
school pupils at or below the 12th-grade level, shall bear upon the
rear of the bus, below the rear windows, a plainly visible sign
containing the words "Stop When Red Lights Flash" in letters not less
than six inches in height. The letters on schoolbus signs shall be
of proportionate width.
Every youth bus, when operated for the transportation of
school pupils, shall bear, upon the front and rear of the youth bus,
a plainly visible sign containing the words "YOUTH BUS" in letters
not less than eight inches in height. The letters on youth bus signs
shall be of proportionate width and the letters shall be in sharp
contrast to the background.
There shall be displayed in a conspicuous place on both the
right and left side of a tow truck, a repossessor's tow vehicle, or
an automobile dismantler's tow vehicle used to tow or carry vehicles
a sign showing the name of the company or the owner or operator of
the tow truck or tow vehicle. The sign shall also contain the
business address and telephone number of the owner or driver. The
letters and numbers of the sign shall not be less than 2 inches in
height and shall be in contrast to the color of the background upon
which they are placed.
A person licensed as a repossession agency pursuant to Chapter 11
(commencing with Section 7500) of Division 3 of the Business and
Professions Code, or a registrant of the agency, may use the license
number issued to the agency by the Department of Consumer Affairs in
lieu of a name, business address, and telephone number.
(a) In every taxicab operated in this state there shall be a
sign of heavy material, not smaller than 6 inches by 4 inches, or
such other size as the agency regulating the operation of the taxicab
provides for other notices or signs required to be in every taxicab,
securely attached and clearly displayed in view of the passenger at
all times, providing in letters as large as the size of the sign will
reasonably allow, all of the following information:
(1) The name, address, and telephone number of the agency
regulating the operation of the taxicab.
(2) The name, address, and telephone number of the firm licensed
or controlled by the agency regulating the operation of the taxicab.
(b) In the event more than one local regulatory agency has
jurisdiction over the operation of the taxicab, the notice required
by paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) shall provide the name, address,
and telephone number of the agency having jurisdiction in the area
where the taxicab operator conducts its greatest volume of business;
or, if this cannot readily be ascertained, the agency having
jurisdiction in the area where the taxicab operator maintains its
offices or primary place of business, provided that the operator
conducts a substantial volume of business in such area; or, if
neither of the foregoing provisions apply, any agency having
jurisdiction of an area where the taxicab operator conducts a
substantial volume of business.
(c) As used in this section, "taxicab" means a passenger vehicle
designed for carrying not more than eight persons, excluding the
driver, and used to carry passengers for hire. "Taxicab" shall not
include a charter-party carrier of passengers within the meaning of
the Passenger Charter-party Carriers' Act, Chapter 8 (commencing with
Section 5351) of Division 2 of the Public Utilities Code.
Any vehicle which carries liquefied petroleum gas fuel or
natural gas, in a tank attached to a vehicle, in any concealed area,
including trunks, compartments, or under the vehicle, shall display
on the exterior of the vehicle the letters "CNG," "LNG," or "LPG,"
whichever type fuel is utilized, in block letters at least one inch
high. The letters shall be of contrasting color and shall be placed
as near as possible to the area of the location of the tank. Any
vehicle fueled by liquefied petroleum gas fuel or by natural gas may
also comply with this section by displaying on each side of the
vehicle words or letters at least 0.25 inch high indicating that the
vehicle is fueled by liquefied petroleum gas or natural gas. It is
unlawful to dispense liquefied petroleum gas fuel or natural gas into
any tank in a concealed area of any vehicle registered in
California, unless the vehicle complies with the requirements of this
The Department of the California Highway Patrol shall
initiate a 12-month study to determine an effective means to enforce
the provisions of the Commercial Vehicle Registration Act of 2001.
The Department of the California Highway Patrol, after consultation
with representatives from the Department of Transportation, the Board
of Equalization, the Department of Motor Vehicles, and the
commercial vehicle industry, shall provide, on or before July 1,
2003, recommendations to the Legislature for actions to be taken to
ensure compliance with that act.