DPS Driver Handbook in South Dakota

SUMMARY: South Dakota Driver's Handbooks

In South Dakota, the Department of Public Safety (DPS) offers a variety of resources to help you obtain your driver's license and become a safe driver. These include the SD driver's license manual, commercial driver's license manual, and motorcycle handbook. For more details about South Dakota traffic and vehicle laws, you can view the Vehicle Code online.

Continue reading this page to find links to the various driving manuals and DMV handbooks available in South Dakota.

South Dakota Driver's License Manual

Before going to your local SD DPS office to take your driver's license exam, make sure you have studied the South Dakota Driver License Manual (REV 2012). In this DMV handbook you can learn all about:

  • Rules of the road.
  • Driver's license procedures.
  • Basic driving techniques, such as starting, accelerating, and stopping.
  • Highway driving and merging.
  • Backing up safely.
  • How to handle emergency situations (e.g., tire blowout, brake failure, headlight failure).
  • How to avoid collisions.
Don't Forget an Online Practice Test!

A perfect complement to studying the SD drivers manual is preparing for the written exam with an online practice test from our state-approved partner. These industry-leading study guides will help you pass the test on your first attempt through interactive multiple-choice questions designed to target the areas you need to study the most.

Motorcycle Operator's Manual in SD

If you're applying for your South Dakota motorcycle license, you'll need to read the South Dakota Motorcycle Manual (REV 2013). In the motorcycle driving manual, you'll learn about topics including:

  • How to obtain your motorcycle license.
  • Vision, knowledge, and skills tests.
  • Avoiding flying objects while riding.
  • Dealing with mechanical issues.
  • Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits while riding.
  • Riding with passengers.
  • Avoiding crashes.

Before taking the South Dakota DPS written exam, you may find it helpful to take a SD motorcycle practice test to help you learn how well you know the motorcycle DMV handbook.

Commercial Driver's License Manual

If you're applying for your South Dakota commercial driver's license (CDL), you'll need to spend some time reading the Commercial Driver's License Manual (REV 2013) to prepare for your SD DPS exams.

Studying the CDL DMV handbook will help you learn:

  • How to apply for your CDL.
  • What to expect when taking your written and driving exams.
  • How to signal properly.
  • How to transport cargo and passengers safely (including hazardous materials).
  • How alcohol and drugs can affect your driving abilities.

Once you've read the SD CDL driving manual, test your knowledge with an online CDL practice test.

NOTE: If you're getting an endorsement for hazardous materials, you'll also need to read the Hazardous Materials Endorsement Renewal Manual (REV 2013).

Vehicle Code in South Dakota

Other resources are available in South Dakota for drivers who want more information not accessible through the various DMV manuals and drivers handbooks.

You can refer to the South Dakota Vehicle Code for laws related to vehicle titling/registration, inspections, traffic laws, and more.

If you've recently received a traffic ticket, you may find the code helpful if you want to fight the charge. For information on how to respond to a citation, visit our Traffic Tickets in SD page.

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