Governments have driving laws that fit their country. When moving to or visiting another country, you need to understand the rules of the road. This information is helpful when relocating in the US because states also have unique driving rules. Differences in state laws include punishments and speed limits. Driving laws are generally strict across the US, and people should understand them.
Traffic Lights and Road Signs in the US
Steering wheels are always on the left side of the car, and you drive on the right side of the road. Road signs and traffic lights are generally the same across the US. Most traffic lights use green, yellow, and green colors. Green lights indicate to go, and yellow warns to prepare to stop. Red lights indicate to stop. Red lights that flash mean use caution. Sometimes, intersections allow right turns on red but never left turns.
Stop signs indicate a complete stop at an intersection, and yield signs indicate to give oncoming traffic the right of way. One-way signs indicate the only direction for the road, and speed limits show the maximum speed a road allows. Railroad crossings have an x on them and use lights and sounds to indicate a train. Parking signs can either have times they allow parking or indicate no parking for a section of the road.
General Driving Safety in the US
The overall safety regulations on the road are the same across the US, such as always wearing a seatbelt. Younger children must be in a car seat and can’t ride in the passenger seat, but ages and weight differ from state to state. Drinking and driving is illegal in all 50 states, but blood alcohol levels vary between states. Most states are .08%, but some states have lower levels for minors or commercial drivers. A couple of states have the blood alcohol level at .10%. Texting and driving is an illegal act in most states, and some make handheld devices illegal while driving.
Traffic Tickets and Police in the US
Many tickets in the US are parking violations, ignoring stop signs, or speeding, which usually result in a fine. More cameras are on the road, which can result in receiving a ticket without knowing. Some states offer the ability to pay for a ticket online. When police pull you over, you’ll see the lights behind you. Pull over at the nearest safe spot and stay in your vehicle. Keep your hands visible and have your registration, license and proof of insurance within reach.
Points Assessment After Traffic Tickets in the US
Each driving violation gets you a certain amount of points and the amounts change from state to state. In Florida, 12 points in 12 months equals a 30-day license suspension. 18 points in 18 months is a 3-month suspension, and 24 points in 3 years is a year suspension. Police don’t follow individuals, but if you drive on a suspended license, it could lead to jail time.
Driving safety and laws differ from state to state but have many key things in common. You should always stop for school buses and drive counterclockwise in roundabouts. When getting a learner’s permit, the age depends on the state where you live. The age of drivers who receive a learner’s permit ranges from 14 to 16.5 years old. Before driving, you should understand the laws of your area.