Safety Laws in Arizona


Anyone sitting in the front seat of a vehicle built after 1972 must at least have his or her lap belt properly adjusted and fastened. If a shoulder belt is also available, that must be properly adjusted and fastened, as well.

Drivers can receive a citation if a passenger under 16 years old is not wearing a seat belt.

Those with a physical or medical disability waiver are exempt from this rule.

Child Car Seat Laws

When riding in a vehicle, all children under 8 years old and/or under 4 ft 9 in. must be properly secured in a child restraint device meeting federal standards. Children who are 5 to 7 years old and/or under 4ft 9 in. MUST, at the very least, ride in a booster seat. The driver can be assessed with a $50 penalty for failing to take this action.

Once a child is taller than 4 ft 9 in. OR they are 8 years old, then they may use a seat belt when riding in a vehicle.

The type of car seat your child must be secured in will vary depending on the age and size of your child. Follow the federal guidelines on the NHSTA website to help find the right car seat for your child.

Although that is the extent of the Arizona law, protecting a child in a vehicle doesn't stop there. The state provides helpful information on how to protect child passengers.

Additionally, if you spot a vehicle with a passenger under 8 years old who appears not to be properly restrained, you can report the driver by calling (800) 505-BABY. Be sure to know the vehicle's license plate number and state, the location, and where the child was sitting.


Anyone operating a motorcycle must wear protective glasses, goggles, or a transparent faceshield. Drivers are exempt from this, though, if their bike has a protective windshield.

Drivers and passengers under 18 years old must wear a helmet.

Cell Phones

School bus drivers are NOT allowed to use cell phones when driving a school bus, unless it's for emergency purposes.

While Arizona does not currently have a statewide cell phone use ban for standard drivers, you may want to think twice before using your phone while you are driving. Phone usage while driving (including calls and texting) causes major accidents every day. Read our Distracted Driving page for more information about driving distraction free.


Drivers must have their headlights on between sunset and sunrise.

Aggressive Drivers

You may report an excessively aggressive driver by contacting the local police department, or calling 911 if it's an emergency.

Impaired Drivers

If you spot a driver who appears to be driving while under the influence, call 911 if it appears to be an emergency situation. If it isn't, report the driver by calling the Department of Public Safety at (602) 223-2000.

Before calling, try to get information such as the vehicle's license plate number, make, model, and current location, if possible.

Unattended Animals

If you intentionally or recklessly leave an animal in your vehicle in a situation where injury or death is likely to occur, you may be cited for a criminal offense. Authorities are allowed to take action to open the vehicle in situations where such action is merited.

If you notice an unattended animal in a vehicle and believe the animal may be in danger, call the local authorities and report it. Be sure to have the proper information ready, such as the location and description of the vehicle.

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