Article I. General Provisions  


§ 20-1. Source of traffic regulations within the City of Lake Wales.
Latest version.

All traffic upon the public streets, highways, and roads of the City of Lake Wales shall be subject to the Florida Uniform Traffic Control Law, F.S. ch. 316, subject to the amendments or supplements contained in this chapter and the official traffic map of the city which is hereby adopted and is on file in the office of the city clerk. The official traffic map shall contain inscriptions designating limitations as to operation of bicycles, commercial motor vehicles, electric personal assistive mobility devices, farm tractors, golf carts, implements of husbandry, mopeds, motorized scooters, motor vehicles, motorcycles, road tractors, semitrailers, special mobile equipment, trailers, trucks, truck tractors, and vehicles upon certain public streets, highways, and roads, designating intersections, designating one-way streets, designating limitations on parking, designating school zones, designating the placement of official traffic control devices and signals, designating speed limits upon roadways, designating stop streets, and designating through streets. It is the express intent of the city commission that this map's inscriptions shall have the full force and effect of law as though set forth herein in full, and that this map shall constitute authority of the city police department in the erection of all traffic signs, markers, traffic lights and other traffic directions. The city manager, with the recommendation of the police chief, is authorized to temporarily amend the traffic map to protect the public health, safety or welfare on any public thoroughfare of the City of Lake Wales. Said temporary amendment shall be presented to the city commission for approval or disapproval at the next regularly scheduled commission meeting. A temporary street closing for repairs, flooding, traffic accidents or the like shall not require an amendment of the traffic map.

(Ord. No. 2005-21, § 1, 6-21-05; Ord. No. 2005-46, § 1, 10-4-05)

§ 20-2. Definitions.
Latest version.

Whenever in this article the following terms are used, they shall have the meanings ascribed as follows:

Authorized emergency vehicles means vehicles of the fire department (fire patrol), police vehicles, and such ambulances and emergency vehicles of municipal departments, public service corporations operated by private corporations, the department of environmental protection, the department of health, and the department of transportation as are designated or authorized by their respective department or the chief of police of an incorporated city or any sheriff of any of the various counties.

Authorized government vehicles means vehicles of the city as are designated or authorized by their respective department or the city manager.

Bicycle means every vehicle propelled solely by human power, and every motorized bicycle propelled by a combination of human power and an electric helper motor capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed of not more than twenty (20) miles per hour on level ground upon which any person may ride, having two (2) tandem wheels, and including any device generally recognized as a bicycle though equipped with two (2) front or two (2) rear wheels. The term does not include such a vehicle with a seat height of no more than twenty-five (25) inches from the ground when the seat is adjusted to its highest position or a scooter or similar device. No person under the age of sixteen (16) may operate or ride upon a motorized bicycle.

Bicycle path means any road, path, or way that is open to bicycle travel, which road, path, or way is physically separated from motorized vehicular traffic by an open space or by a barrier and is located either within the highway right-of-way or within an independent right-of-way.

Business district means the territory contiguous to, and including, a highway when fifty (50) percent or more of the frontage thereon, for a distance of three hundred (300) feet or more, is occupied by buildings in use for business.

Commercial motor vehicle means any self-propelled or towed vehicle used on the public highways in commerce to transport passengers or cargo, if such vehicle:

(a) Has a gross vehicle weight rating of ten thousand (10,000) pounds or more;

(b) Is designed to transport more than fifteen (15) passengers, including the driver; or

(c) Is used in the transportation of materials found to be hazardous for the purposes of the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, as amended (49 U.S.C. § 1801 et seq.).

Driver means any person who drives or is in actual physical control of a vehicle on a highway or who is exercising control of a vehicle or steering a vehicle being towed by a motor vehicle.

Electric personal assistive mobility device means any self-balancing, two-nontandem-wheeled device, designed to transport only one (1) person, with an electric propulsion system with average power of seven hundred fifty (750) watts (1 horsepower), the maximum speed of which, on a paved level surface when powered solely by such a propulsion system while being ridden by an operator who weighs one hundred seventy (170) pounds, is less than twenty (20) miles per hour. Electric personal assistive mobility devices are not vehicles as defined in this section.

Farm tractor means any motor vehicle designed and used primarily as a farm implement for drawing plows, mowing machines, and other implements of husbandry.

Golf cart means a motor vehicle designed and manufactured for operation on a golf course for sporting or recreational purposes.

Gross weight means the weight of a vehicle without load plus the weight of any load thereon.

Implement of husbandry means any vehicle designed and adapted exclusively for agricultural, horticultural, or livestock-raising operations or for lifting or carrying an implement of husbandry and in either case not subject to registration if used upon the highways.

Intersection means:

(a) The area embraced within the prolongation or connection of the lateral curblines; or, if none, then the lateral boundary lines of the roadways of two (2) highways which join one another at, or approximately at, right angles; or the area within which vehicles traveling upon different highways joining at any other angle may come in conflict.

(b) Where a highway includes two (2) roadways thirty (30) feet or more apart, then every crossing of each roadway of such divided highway by an intersecting highway shall be regarded as a separate intersection. In the event such intersecting highway also includes two (2) roadways thirty (30) feet or more apart, then every crossing of two (2) roadways of such highways shall be regarded as a separate intersection.

Laned highway means a highway the roadway of which is divided into two (2) or more clearly marked lanes for vehicular traffic.

Law enforcement officer means any municipal police officer authorized to direct or regulate traffic or to make arrests for violations of traffic regulations.

Moped means any vehicle with pedals to permit propulsion by human power, having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three (3) wheels; with a motor rated not in excess of 2-brake horsepower and not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than thirty (30) miles per hour on level ground; and with a power-drive system that functions directly or automatically without clutching or shifting years by the operator after the drive system is engaged. If an internal combustion engine is used, the displacement may not exceed fifty (50) cubic centimeters.

Motorized scooter means any vehicle not having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider, designed to travel on not more than three (3) wheels, and not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than thirty (30) miles per hour on level ground.

Motor vehicle means any self-propelled vehicle not operated upon rails or guideway, but not including any bicycle, motorized scooter, electric personal assistive mobility device, or moped.

Motorcycle means any motor vehicle having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three (3) wheels in contact with the ground, but excluding a tractor or a moped.

Official traffic control devices means all signs, signals, markings, and devices, not inconsistent with this chapter, placed or erected by authority of a public body or official having jurisdiction for the purpose of regulating, warning, or guiding traffic.

Official traffic control signal means any device, whether manually, electrically, or mechanically operated, by which traffic is alternately directed to stop and permitted to proceed.

Operator means any person who is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle upon the highway, or who is exercising control over or steering a vehicle being towed by a motor vehicle.

Owner means a person who holds the legal title of a vehicle, or, in the event a vehicle is the subject of an agreement for the conditional sale or lease thereof with the right of purchase upon performance of the conditions stated in the agreement and with an immediate right of possession vested in the conditional vendee or lessee, or in the event a mortgagor of a vehicle is entitled to possession, then such conditional vendee, or lessee, or mortgagor shall be deemed the owner, for the purposes of this chapter.

Park or parking means the standing of a vehicle, whether occupied or not, otherwise than temporarily for the purpose of and while actually engaged in loading or unloading merchandise or passengers as may be permitted by law under this chapter.

Pedestrian means any person afoot.

Person means any natural person, firm, copartnership, association, or corporation.

Police department means the City of Lake Wales Police Department.

Road tractor means any motor vehicle designed and used for drawing other vehicles and not so constructed as to carry any load thereon, either independently or as any part of the weight of a vehicle or load so drawn.

Residence district means the territory contiguous to, and including, a highway, not comprising a business district, when the property on such highway, for a distance of three hundred (300) feet or more, is, in the main, improved with residences or residences and buildings in use for business.

Right-of-way means the right of one (1) vehicle or pedestrian to proceed in a lawful manner in preference to another vehicle or pedestrian approaching under such circumstances of direction, speed, and proximity as to give rise to danger of collision unless one grants precedence to the other.

Roadway means that portion of a highway improved, designed, or ordinarily used for vehicular travel, exclusive of the berm or shoulder. In the event a highway includes two (2) or more separate roadways, the term "roadway" as used herein refers to any such roadway separately, but not to all such roadways collectively.

Semitrailer means any vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle and so constructed that some part of its weight and that of its load rests upon, or is carried by, another vehicle.

Special mobile equipment means any vehicle not designed or used primarily for the transportation of persons or property and only incidentally operated or moved over a highway, including, but not limited to, ditchdigging apparatus, well-boring apparatus, and road construction and maintenance machinery, such as asphalt spreaders, bituminous mixers, bucket loaders, tractors other than truck tractors, ditchers, leveling graders, finishing machines, motor graders, road rollers, scarifiers, earthmoving carryalls and scrapers, power shovels and draglines, and self-propelled cranes and earthmoving equipment. The term does not include house trailers, dump trucks, truck-mounted transit mixers, cranes or shovels, or other vehicles designed for the transportation of persons or property to which machinery has been attached.

Stand or standing means the halting of a vehicle, whether occupied or not, otherwise than temporarily, for the purpose of, and while actually engaged in, receiving or discharging passengers, as may be permitted by law under this chapter.

Stop or stopping. When prohibited, any halting, even momentarily, of a vehicle, whether occupied or not, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic or to comply with the directions of a law enforcement officer or traffic control sign or signal.

Street or highway means:

(a) The entire width between the boundary lines of every way or place of whatever nature when any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular traffic;

(b) The entire width between the boundary lines of any privately owned way or place used for vehicular travel by the owner and those having express or implied permission from the owner, but not by other persons, or any limited access road owned or controlled by a special district, whenever, by written agreement entered into under F.S. 316.006(2)(b) or (3)(b), a county or municipality exercises traffic control jurisdiction over said way or place;

(c) Any area, such as a runway, taxiway, ramp, clear zone, or parking lot, within the boundary of any airport owned by the state, a county, a municipality, or a political subdivision, which area is used for vehicular traffic but which is not open for vehicular operation by the general public; or

(d) Any way or place used for vehicular traffic on a controlled access basis within a mobile home park recreation district which has been created under F.S. § 418.30 and the recreational facilities of which district are open to the general public.

Traffic means pedestrians, ridden or herded animals, and vehicles, streetcars, and other conveyances either singly or together while using any street or highway for purposes of travel.

Trailer means any vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle.

Through highway means any highway or portion thereof on which vehicular traffic is given the right-of-way and at the entrances to which vehicular traffic from intersecting highways is required to yield right-of-way to vehicles on such through highway in obedience to either a stop sign or yield sign, or otherwise in obedience to law.

Truck means any motor vehicle designed, used, or maintained primarily for the transportation of property.

Truck tractor means any motor vehicle designed and used primarily for drawing other vehicles and not so constructed as to carry a load other than a part of the weight of the vehicle and load so drawn.

Vehicle means every device, in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, excepting devices used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

(Ord. No. 2005-21, § 1, 6-21-05)

§ 20-3. Obstruction of public streets, highways and roads.
Latest version.

(a) It is unlawful for any person or persons willfully to obstruct the free, convenient, and normal use of any public street, highway, or road by impeding, hindering, stifling, retarding, or restraining traffic or passage thereon, by standing or approaching vehicles thereon, or by endangering the safe movement of vehicles or pedestrians traveling thereon.

(b) It is unlawful, without proper authorization or permit issued by the police department, for any person or persons willfully to obstruct the free, convenient, and normal use of any public street, highway, or road by any of the means specified in subsection (a) in order to solicit. Organizations qualified under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and registered pursuant to F.S. ch. 496, or persons or organization acting on their behalf are exempted from the provisions of this section.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to inhibit political campaigning on the public right-of-way or to require a permit for such activity.

(d) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), any commercial vehicle used solely for the purpose of collecting solid waste or recyclable or recovered materials may stop or stand on any public street, highway, or road for the sole purpose of collecting solid waste or recyclable or recovered materials. However, such solid waste or recyclable or recovered materials collection vehicle shall show or display amber flashing hazard lights at all times that it is engaged in stopping or standing for the purpose of collecting solid waste or recyclable or recovered materials.

(e) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), any commercial vehicle used solely for the purpose of collecting or delivering persons or property may stop or stand on any public street, highway, or road for the sole purpose of collecting or delivering persons or property. However, such commercial vehicle shall show or display amber flashing hazard lights at all times that it is engaged in stopping or standing for the purpose of collecting or delivering persons or property.

(f) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), any vehicle of the U.S. Postal Service used solely for the purpose of collecting or delivering mail may stop or stand on any public street, highway, or road for the sole purpose of collecting or delivering mail. However, such vehicle shall show or display amber flashing hazard lights at all times that it is engaged in stopping or standing for the purpose of collecting or delivering mail.

(g) Any person or persons who violate the provisions of this section, upon conviction, shall be punished as set forth in F.S. ch. 316 and ch. 318.

(Ord. No. 2005-21, § 1, 6-21-05)

§ 20-4. Cruising control ordinance.
Latest version.

(a) This section shall be known as the Lake Wales Cruising Control Ordinance.

(b) Definitions. Whenever in this section the following terms are used, they shall have the meanings ascribed as follows:

Congested traffic. Traffic on any public street, highway, or road which is delayed to the point that:

(1) Motor vehicles back up in any direction for more than one (1) block restricting vehicular movement on any public street, highway, or road where the delay in forward movement is due to the position of other motor vehicles; or

(2) Motor vehicles cannot readily move forward on portions of a public street, highway, or road between intersections with other public streets, highways, or roads because the average traffic speed has dropped to less than fifteen (15) mph, where the delay in forward movement is due to the position of other motor vehicles.

Cruising. The unnecessary repetitive driving of a motor vehicle on a designated public street, highway, or road past the same traffic control point three (3) or more times during restricted hours, upon a designated public street, highway, or road with posted signs, constituting official traffic control devices, informing the public that the public street, highway, or road is subject to regulation under the Lake Wales Cruising Control Ordinance and that said regulation is in effect.

Designated street . Any public street, highway, or road designated as a no cruising area pursuant to this section provided that the public street, highway, or road is under the control or maintenance of the city. Any public street, highway, or road so designated shall be clearly marked with signs constituting an official traffic control device, advising the public that the public street, highway, or road is subject to such regulation.

Traffic control point. A clearly identified reference point on a designated public street, highway, or road, as determined and marked by an official traffic control device posted at the direction of the city commission or their designee.

Official traffic control devices. All signs, signals, markings, and devices, not inconsistent with this chapter, placed or erected by authority of a public body or official having jurisdiction for the purpose of regulating, warning, or guiding traffic.

Restricted hours. The days and times that cruising is prohibited, specifically between the hours of 8:00 p.m. Friday until 4:00 a.m. Saturday, between the hours of 8:00 p.m. Saturday until 4:00 a.m. Sunday, and between the hours of 8:00 p.m. Sunday until 4:00 a.m. Monday.

Restricted area. Any public street, highway, or road designated by the city commission or their designee as a "no cruising area" and that is within the City of Lake Wales.

(c) It is unlawful for any person to engage in unnecessary repetitive driving, also known as cruising as defined herein, while operating a motor vehicle, and no owner of a motor vehicle shall permit another to engage in the cruising while operating a motor vehicle under his or her care, custody, and control, after notice as described in the section herein below.

(d) Notice of violation.

(1) Upon observation that a motor vehicle has been operated on a designated and posted public street, highway, or road past the same traffic control point in excess of three (3) or more times during restricted hours, a law enforcement shall stop the motor vehicle for the purpose of giving notice to the operator and to each passenger in the vehicle. The notice, which may be verbal or in writing, shall inform the operator and passengers that this section is in effect and that a subsequent operation of the vehicle past any traffic control point during the restricted hours after the initial observation of the vehicle shall constitute a violation of this section. The notice shall include a brief and general description of the designated public street, highway, or road and a description of the fine that may be imposed upon conviction.

(2) At the time a motor vehicle is stopped and given notice as described in this section, and at the time a motor vehicle is stopped after giving notice, and prior to issuing a uniform traffic citation to the operator of the motor vehicle, the officer shall afford the operator or a passenger in the motor vehicle an opportunity to explain his or her conduct. No person shall be convicted for violating section 20-4(b) or F.S. § 316.074(1) if it appears at trial that the explanation given was true and disclosed a lawful purpose. Refusal by the person to explain his or her conduct to the officer shall not be deemed an element of the offense or evidence establishing probable cause that the person has violated this section.

(e) Enforcement. The operation of a motor vehicle past the same traffic control point where a posted official traffic control device prohibits cruising, after issuance of the notice described herein, constitutes a violation of 20-4(b) as well as F.S. § 316.074(1). A uniform traffic citation for violation of F.S. § 316.074(1) shall be issued to the actual operator of the motor vehicle at the time the offense occurs. It shall be immaterial whether the operator of the motor vehicle at the time the offense occurs actually operated the motor vehicle each time it passes the traffic control point.

(f) Penalties. All penalties for the violation of 20-4(b) or F.S. § 316.074(1) shall be in accordance with the provisions of F.S. ch. 316 and ch. 318.

(g) Exclusions. The provisions of this section shall not apply to the following:

(1) Any authorized emergency vehicle when operated in an official capacity; or

(2) Any authorized government vehicle when operated in official capacity; or

(2) Any licensed public transportation vehicle, vehicle for hire, or any other vehicle utilized for business or commercial purposes, when actually operated for such purposes.

(h) Designation of streets. The city commission authorizes the city manager or his or her designee to designate a public street, highway, or road as a no cruising area based upon a prior determination that a state of congested traffic has been demonstrated to occur during restricted hours. Such designation shall include any portion of the public street, highway, or road within which the congested traffic condition is demonstrated to exist. Upon the designation of a public street; highway, or road as a no cruising area, the city manager or his or her designee shall direct the placement of official traffic control devices providing notice to the public, and shall establish one (1) or more traffic control points to identify the vehicles being operated upon the designated public street, highway, or road.

(Ord. No. 2005-21, § 1, 6-21-05)

§ 20-5. Operating of radios or other mechanical sound making devices or instruments in vehicles; exemptions; penalties (Repealed)
Effective on Wednesday, April 8, 2015

       (Ord. No. 2011-13, § 2, 8-16-11; Repealed by Ord. No. 2015-03, § 2, 4-8-15)