Q: What is the DMV’s policy for headgear when the license photo is taken?

A: The department prefers the removal of headgear, unless it is part of your normal identification, or is worn because of religious beliefs. In those instances, headgear is permissible as long as the individual’s face is visible. Generally, headgear such as a baseball hat can obstruct the eyes, nose, mouth or cause dark shadows. This can result in unacceptable photographs and unnecessary return trips to our field offices.

Q: My husband and I have started to take daily walks around our neighborhood for exercise. We live in an area with heavy traffic and want to know if there are any rules we should keep in mind as pedestrians.

A: One out of every six traffic fatalities is a pedestrian, so it is important for you to be informed. The 2009 California Driver Handbook offers these tips to pedestrians:

• Never “jaywalk,” or cross a street between intersections. Always cross at a crosswalk.

• Do not suddenly leave a curb or other safe place and walk or run into the path of a vehicle close enough to be a danger to you.

• If there is no sidewalk, walk in the direction that faces the oncoming traffic

• At night, make yourself more visible by wearing white clothing and retro-reflective materials or by carrying a flashlight.

You can view the California Driver Handbook online at www.dmv.ca.gov. Under the Publications tab, click Driver Handbook.

Valverde is the director of the Department of Motor Vehicles.

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