Traffic Laws in the US

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Traffic Laws

Traffic laws in the United States vary because every state enacts its own regulations and laws. America has a strict judicial system. There are different sets of traffic laws in the US that you must obey if you plan to drive.

Here are some of the most common and popular traffic laws in America:

Speed ​​limits

Speed limits in the US differ in each state, sometimes even in towns. In the cities, speed limits vary by zone and street type. But the rule of the thumb is, stay in a speed somewhere between 55 mph to 75 mph or 90 km/h to 120 km/h on major roads and 55 mph to 65 mph or 88km/h to 100 km/h in secondary roads.

To avoid speeding tickets, it would be best to keep an eye on speed limits signs that you can find in just a short distance from each other. You should slow down as you approach an intersection of a city. There are yellow speed limit panels that remind you to slow down, so be mindful. From 55 mph, you should slow down to 45 mph and gradually reach 35 mph.

School zones

You should be extra mindful in school zones. Speed limits are significantly reduced in school zones, especially during times when students are going in and out of the school. Flashing orange lights indicates these times of the day. Speed limits are decreased from 25 mph to as slow as 15 mph. You should also pay close attention to school buses, which are always stopping to pick up or drop students. As the orange-yellow school bus stops and its red light flashes, vehicles from both sides of the lane must stop, because students might be crossing the road. The vehicles can go once all students have exited the bus and the bus starts again.

Drinking and driving

Blood-alcohol limit in the US is almost the same with European limits, but vary in each state. This is one of the most popular traffic laws, but just for the sake of common sense, it would be better to not drink and drive.


In crossroads without traffic lights, the rule is “first come, first serve.

Right turn on red lights

Making a right turn on red lights is usually allowed as long as you give way to other vehicles. But if a panel clearly states, “no right turn on red,” then right turn is prohibited.

Passing other vehicles

Remember that the right lane is for the slow vehicles while the left is for the fast ones. In three or more lanes, the center is for normal traffic, the right is for the trucks and the vehicles that are getting in and out of the highway, while the left lane is for overtaking.


Pedestrian has the priority in crosswalk if there are no traffic lights.

Seat belts

Drivers should always wear the seatbelt. In some cases, passengers in the back should also wear their seatbelts. Your insurance provider requires everyone to wear his or her seatbelts.

Mobile phone

More states are enacting laws that prohibit drivers from using their mobile phones while they are driving. There are even some states that do not allow drivers to use their mobile phones even with a hand-free set.

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