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  • Vehicle Code in Alaska

    The Alaska Vehicle Code

    The Alaska Vehicle Code is THE rule book for all things having to do with roads, driving, and motor vehicles. It can be found under Title 28 of the Alaska Statutes. The statute and all the chapters are public property―they belong to all citizens of Alaska. As a citizen, you are allowed to read, copy, download, and otherwise access the word of the code at any time.

    Where to Find the Code

    The Alaska DMV does not have the vehicle code on its home website, but it is available online through the Alaska legislature.

    You may also be able to obtain a copy of a particular section of the Vehicle Code by calling the Anchorage Law Librarian at (907) 264-0585, or by e-mail atlibrary@courts.state.ak.us. You may also fax a completed Information Request to the main Law Library.

    What's It All About?

    The Vehicle Code is all about safety―safety on the roads, in the car buying lot, on a public transport bus, in the crosswalks and on the sidewalks, while you are parking and a host of other applicable areas and situations. Public safety is the main reason for legislation for new updated laws, the abolishment of outdated laws, and changes in existing laws to make them safer for the public.

    The Motor Vehicle Code Chapters

    These are the chapter heading of the Alaska Statute, Title 28. Motor Vehicles:

    • Chapter 1: Alaska Uniform Traffic Laws Act
    • Chapter 5: Administration
    • Chapter 10: Vehicle Registration and Title
    • Chapter 11: Abandoned Vehicles
    • Chapter 15: Drivers' Licenses
    • Chapter 17: Commercial Driver Training Schools
    • Chapter 20: Motor Vehicle Safety Responsibility Act
    • Chapter 22: Mandatory Motor Vehicle Insurance
    • Chapter 25: Protection of Blind Persons
    • Chapter 30: Abandoned Vehicles
    • Chapter 31: Abandoned Motor Vehicles
    • Chapter 32: Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Citations
    • Chapter 33: Commercial Motor Vehicles
    • Chapter 35: Offenses and Accidents
    • Chapter 37: Driver License Compact
    • Chapter 39: Snowmobiles
    • Chapter 40: General Provisions

    This should help you narrow your search. You may ask the law librarian for a particular section, or, in the case of a citation referencing a number only, you may read more about the nature of the code and the law.

    Using the Code

    One way to use the Vehicle Code is to look up the exact legal wording regarding a ticket. Say, for instance, you are cited for making an illegal turn. The section of the Vehicle Code is always written on your ticket, so you may look there to see the exact code. Because it is an offense you are referencing, it should be covered in Chapter 35 of the Vehicle Code, so you would go to that part of the code, either in the book or online.

    Or, perhaps you own a large piece of property. One day, you discover a car parked on a section of your land, close to the road, but not on the road itself. You check back a few days later and the car is still there. After a month, you are sure the car is abandoned and want to get it off of your property. Of course, you are not happy at the prospect of having to pay a tow truck fee and have the thing stored―it isn't even yours, so you can't even sell it to make up the cost of the tow. If you wonder what the laws are about this sort of thing, you could contact the law library and ask for the contents of Chapter 11 of the Code be sent to you. Then, you would discover that you may have the vehicle towed at no expense to you.

    A Handy Reference

    The Code can also come in handy if you are attempting to settle with an insurance company over a minor traffic accident, or if you received a ticket and wish to go to court rather than simply pay the fine, especially in a case where you feel like you did not break the law. Reading the wording of the laws can also be helpful by making sense out of a traffic violation, even if you plan to pay the fine and accept that you actually did do something wrong.

    Check Your Driver's License Status

    Whenever you need or want to check the status of your driver’s license, you can order a driving record report. This record will spell out if your driver’s license is currently valid. Should your license have been revoked or suspended, the report will indicate that according to what’s on record at the DMV. This report will also show points against your license and, in some cases, information on any accidents you have had.

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