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Safety Laws in Arizona

Safety laws protecting individuals on roadways can vary from state to state. Below are a few Arizona safety laws you should be aware of when driving.

Seatbelt Laws

While driving in Arizona, you are required to wear a safety belt at all times.

As the driver, you're responsible for the use of safety belts by all passengers under 16 years old. Front seat passengers 16 years old or older may be cited individually for not wearing a safety belt.

Child Safety Seat Regulations

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) regulates the use of child restraint systems for children meeting certain age and height requirements while inside a motor vehicle.

Safety seat regulations for minors in the state include:

  • The use of a child restraint device for children:
    • Under 8 years old.
      AND
    • 4 feet 9 inches tall and under.
  • A required booster seat for children:
    • 5 years old to 7 years old.
      AND/OR
    • Under 4 feet 9 inches tall.

The installation of the child safety restraint must be in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications for your child's weight and height. Once your child is 8 years old or older, or taller than 4 feet 9 inches, he or she may use the vehicle's safety belt.

Cell Phones & Distracted Driving

While there is no handheld cell phone ban for Arizona drivers, some cities and counties within the state may have their own laws and regulations.

However, the following exceptions apply:

  • School bus drivers are NOT permitted to use a cell phone while driving.
  • Drivers may receive a citation for distracted driving if they are seen swerving or demonstrating other erratic behavior due to cell phone use.

Major cities such as Phoenix and Tucson have also adopted additional texting laws, prohibiting drivers from sending and reading texts while operating a motor vehicle. Check out our page on distracted driving to learn more about what to avoid.

Window Tinting

Arizona allows window tinting or other sunscreening materials. However, you must comply with state regulations regarding light transmittance and reflectance.

Arizona law requires:

  • For front side windows:
    • A light transmission of 33% plus or minus 3%.
    • A luminous reflectance of 35% plus or minus 3%.
      • A rearview mirror and left and right side mirrors are required for vehicles with window sunscreening devices.
  • For rear windows and side windows to the rear of the driver:
    • A luminous reflectance of 35% plus or minus 3% or less.
    • There are no light transmittance laws for these windows.

Failure to abide by these laws may result in a fine.

Unattended Minors & Pets

While there are no current laws regulating unattended children inside a motor vehicle, it is recommended for adults and supervising adults to use discretion.

However, because of the increased risk of heat stroke and the possibility for other fatal outcomes during the warmer months of the year, you may be subject to charges of child neglect or child endangerment according to the Arizona Department of Child Safety (DCS).

For pets, the animal cruelty law prevents owners from leaving pets unattended inside a motor vehicle when the likely result is injury or death, and may be cause for criminal punishment.

If you notice children or pets inside a vehicle that may be in danger, please call your local authorities.

Helmet Laws

There are no mandatory helmet laws for bicyclists in Arizona.

For motorcycles, helmets are required for all drivers and passengers under the age of 18 years old.

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