Riverside Police Department
Traffic Bureau Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: My car was impounded, what do I do? Vehicles may be impounded for several reasons.
If your vehicle was impounded as a result of being abandoned, a traffic hazard, expired or suspended registration, or the driver was arrested, the registered owner must bring proper identification, current registration and proof of insurance to the Police Department. Bring all DMV paperwork showing current registration or a one day moving pass. This must be done Monday through Friday, between 8:00a.m. and 5:00p.m. If the vehicle is currently registered, a release will be issued for a fee of $20. If the vehicle was reported stolen, there is no fee. After you have received a vehicle release, arrangements can be made with the tow company to pay their fees and have the vehicle released. For additional information regarding the release of a vehicle under the above circumstances, please contact the Records Bureau at (951) 826-5700.
If your vehicle was impounded because it was used in a crime or is evidence of a crime, contact the Tow Coordinator at (951) 351-6398. Be sure to have your license plate number available and they can refer you to the officer handling the case.
If your vehicle was impounded because it was being operated by an unlicensed driver or someone driving on a suspended license, it will be held for 30 days (per California Vehicle Code Section 14602.6). In order to get a vehicle release, you must meet the following requirements: 1) The registered owner must be present with a valid form of identification; 2) The vehicle registration must be current or you must possess a Deposit of Fees receipt issued by the DMV and a temporary moving permit; 3) You must show proof of current insurance, and 4) You must pay the release fee of $372 in the form of Cash, Credit or Debit. If the registered owner is unlicensed, he/she must be accompanied by a licensed driver.
In most cases, the 30-day holding period will not be waived. However, if there are extenuating circumstances, an appointment can be made with a hearing officer within ten (10) days of the date of impound. A determination will be made on the hold status. Hearings are conducted Monday through Thursday between 8:00a.m. and 4:00p.m. in the Traffic Bureau. Appointments can be made by calling (951) 351-6398. The registered owner is still responsible for the release fee regardless if the vehicle was released early from a 30 day hold.
Q: What does CVC 14601.1 mean?
This is the California Vehicle Code www.leginfo.ca.gov/calaw.html section for driving a vehicle with a suspended license.
Q: Someone was driving my vehicle and it was impounded. How can I find out where the vehicle is located and retrieve my property.
You may find out where your vehicle is being stored by calling the Police Department at (951) 826-5700. Please allow 24 hours from the time of impound for processing. Please have your license plate number, vehicle identification number (VIN), or police report number available when you call. In order to get property out of the impounded vehicle, the registered owner must have valid identification and contact the tow company directly to make arrangements.
Q: I am the registered owner of an impounded vehicle and unable to come to the Police Department to obtain a release form. How can I get my car?
If circumstances arise and the registered owner is unable to come to the Police Department to obtain a release form, the registered owner may (with written, notarized authorization and proper identification) authorize someone else with a valid CA drivers’ license to pick up the vehicle.
Q: The registered owner of the vehicle is in jail/prison and wants to release the vehicle and/or property located in the vehicle to me. What should I do?
If the registered owner is in jail/prison, the inmate and a Sheriff’s Custody Deputy must sign a written letter authorizing the vehicle to be released to a CA licensed designee. This signed form, along with current registration, proof of insurance and a valid CA drivers’ license, must be brought to the Police Department to obtain a release form.
Q: I was involved in a traffic collision. How long does it take to get a copy of the police report?
To obtain a copy of the collision report, contact the Records Bureau at (951) 826-5700. It may take five (5) to ten (10) working days for a collision report to be ready for release. Collisions involving major injuries may take longer due to extensive follow-up investigations. You may obtain a copy of the report by filling out a copy request form and paying a $12 fee.
Q: Where can I get a "fix-it ticket" signed off?
A “fix-it ticket” can be signed off at either of the Riverside Police Department facilities:
Monday through Friday,
between the hours of 8:00a.m. and 5:00p.m. We will gladly inspect the
vehicle and, if the problem is one that we can sign off, we will. There is
an $15.00 vehicle inspection fee. A citation may be signed off by any police
Q: What do I do with my "fix-it ticket" after it is signed off?
You take the “fix-it
Q: How do I contest a parking citation?
On the back of the parking citation, you will find instructions that will assist you in filing a response if you feel you were incorrectly cited.
Q: How do I contest a traffic citation?
On the face of the citation you will find the address of the traffic court, as well as the date and time you are scheduled to appear. You can appear in court to contest your traffic citation.
Q: Who do I call if I am aware of immediate traffic hazards?
Q: Who do I call to report on-going traffic problems?
If the problem is
happening right now, you may call the
For a reoccurring issue, you may call 311, or go online at http://crmweb.riversideca.gov/ to report the problem.
Q: How do I obtain a driver's license?
Drivers’ licenses are obtained through the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) at (800) 777-0133 or www.dmv.ca.gov.
Q: What is considered proper or valid identification?
consists of: current
Q: I was involved in a traffic collision, but I don’t agree with the findings and/or information in the police report. What can I do?
You may make a supplemental report at the front counter of either of the Riverside Police Department facilities:
Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:00a.m. and 5:00p.m. Your supplemental report will be attached to the original report written by the officer and your insurance company will take it from there.
Q: I was involved in a non-injury collision. When I called the police, why wouldn't they send out a police car? Or, a police officer came to the scene but didn’t take a report.
Non-injury collisions do not require a police report. Drivers are instructed to move their vehicles out of traffic. Once safely moved to the side of the roadway, they should exchange drivers’ license, vehicle and insurance information. The drivers are then required by state law to contact their insurance companies and provide them with the information regarding the collision. The insurance company will take it from there.
Q: There was a major collision on the street near my house. The police had the street closed for hours. Why did it take so long for them to re-open the street?
The Riverside Police Department Traffic Education Unit provides monthly fitting stations at the Magnolia Police Facility. Additionally, through collaboration with Inland Empire Safe Kids, Riverside County Injury Prevention Services and California Highway Patrol, inspections are also offered through community events. Any questions can be addressed by Traffic Education Coordinator, Nicolle Defries, at (951) 826-5674 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: What is a Safety Cite?