Updated December 30, 2019 - 4:37 am
As 2019 comes to an end, motorists may need a reminder of new laws enacted this year by the Legislature.
Although the new regulations went into effect Oct. 1, Las Vegas Valley drivers need to be aware of them to ensure that they’re following the law and save themselves the time and expense of dealing with traffic citations.
Here are the new road regulations that kicked in this year, per the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles.
The helmet law was expanded to require moped riders to wear helmets on state roads.
The new law also applies to trimobiles with handlebars and a saddle seat, but it does not include three-wheeled vehicles with an enclosed cab.
Reckless driving, vehicular manslaughter
The reckless driving law now allows prosecution of reckless driving and vehicular manslaughter offenses in places where the public has access, such as parking lots, parking garages and roads in gated communities and apartment complexes. Previously, most traffic laws, aside from driving under the influence, applied only if the vehicle was on a public street.
Trick driving that diverts or slows traffic on public roads to allow for stunts or the filming of stunts is now considered reckless driving and is a gross misdemeanor.
Penalties for those who participate in or organize trick driving include a minimum fine of $1,000, a minimum of 100 hours of community service, possible jail time, a driver’s license suspension of six months to two years and impoundment of the vehicles used in the stunt for up to 30 days.
The maximum fine for speeding is now capped at $20 for each mile per hour above the speed limit or proper rate of speed. Courts may reduce a speeding citation to a non-moving violation if offenders pay all fees and fines prior to their first court date. Specifically, it is now illegal to drive at a speed that results in the injury of another person or damage to any property.
Motorists approaching any traffic incident are required to slow to less than the posted speed limit, move to a non-adjacent lane and be prepared to stop. This law now includes approaching non-emergency vehicles with flashing lights. Tow trucks and service vehicles under contract with the Nevada Department of Transportation are now allowed to display non-flashing blue lights.
Parking at electric charging stations
With the popularity of electric vehicles rising each year, more and more electric vehicle charging stations have popped up in the state.
It is now illegal to park at an electric vehicle charging station unless the vehicle is being charged. The space must be marked appropriately, and a sign must state “Minimum fine of $100 for use by others.”
Remember these new regulations when you hit the road going into the year so that the “new year, new me” motto doesn’t include a new traffic violation.
New Year’s Eve smart and safe
Included in last week’s Road Warrior column, the free and discounted rides offered for New Year’s Eve are worth pointing out again ahead of Tuesday’s festivities.
Lyft is distributing $20,000 toward discounted New Year’s Eve rides for passengers to celebrate and ride smart.
New and existing users can receive up to $5 off two rides in the Las Vegas Valley with code “LASNYE” from 10 a.m. Tuesday through 4 p.m. Wednesday, while supplies last.
In its third year, the Zero Fatalities coalition’s push to curb impaired driving appears to be paying off, according to Zero Fatalities spokesman Andrew Bennett.
Additionally, passengers can use public transit as a ride alternative to supplement their transportation plans, as the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada will offer free rides on all 39 fixed transit routes from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 9 a.m. on New Year’s Day.
Everyone, enjoy the festivities responsibly and have a happy new year.