SAN JOSE (CBS 5) — San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is facing a $35 fine or traffic school after he received a traffic ticket Tuesday morning.

A police officer pulled over the mayor, who was driving his blue Toyota Prius, for failing to flip on his turn signal 100 feet before the intersection of White and Mabury Roads. Reed told CBS 5 he did not name drop himself.

“I handed him my registration and license. He checked it out, came back and said he’s going to give me a ticket,” he said.

Reed said traffic violators should get tickets, no matter who they are. “That’s the way it works, that’s the way it should be,” the mayor said.

Data from San Jose Police about turn signal tickets was not immediately available, but it is a problem. A CBS 5 crew watched the intersection for nearly an hour Tuesday and found about half of the drivers were not using their turn signals.

The Society of Automotive Engineers recently issued a report on the usage of turn signals, finding one out of four drivers are turning without using their blinkers. According to the SAE, at least one million crashes could be prevented each year in the U.S. if more drivers used their turn signals.

Reed has been battling police officers and other city employees over pay cuts and layoffs. After a decade of budget deficits, the mayor pushed for pension reform that voters approved in June. But the mayor doesn’t believe the measure led to the traffic ticket.

“I don’t know, I didn’t see any evidence of that,” Reed said. “I think the officer was just doing his job.”

The San Jose Police Department did not return CBS 5’s requests for comment as of Tuesday night.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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