Traffic Safety Laws in North Dakota

Helmet Laws


Only riders 17 years old or younger are required to wear a helmet. Failure to do so will cost you 2 points on your license and $20 from your wallet.


There are no mandatory helmet laws for bicyclists.

Electronic Devices, Texting & Distracted Driving

All drivers, regardless of age or experience, are banned from texting while driving.

Drivers younger than 18 years old are banned from electronic devices use as well.

Both infractions are primary offenses. This means law enforcement does not need a different infraction (speeding, running a stoplight...) to pull you over if caught texting or talking on your cell phone.

North Dakota also fines any type of distracted driving that leads to a traffic violation. This offense will result in a $100 citation.

Headlight Laws

Motorcycles are required to ride with headlights on during daylight.

Unlike some other states, you are not required to turn on your car's headlights when the windshield wipers are in use.

Reporting Unsafe and/or Drunken Drivers

To report a drunk or an unsafe driver, dial 911.

Unattended Children In Vehicles

No rule specific to leaving unattended toddlers in vehicles exists. Local and state authorities, however, can still use their own legal discretion in issuing child negligence charges. A child left alone in a car could be subjected to death from the weather; an accident due to the child climbing out of the seat; and even kidnapping. In short, it's a bad idea.

Unattended Pets In Vehicles

There are no rules making it illegal to leave unattended pets in cars.

Child Car Seat Laws

  • All kids 7 years old or younger must ride in either a booster seat or car seat.
  • Seat belts may substitute for a booster or car seat, provided your child is at least 57 inches.
  • Lap belts may be worn instead, provided your vehicle only has lap belts and your child has outgrown their booster seat.
  • Kids between the ages of 8 and 17 years old must either wear a seat belt or be seated in a child restraint. This applies to both the front and back seats.
  • All drivers are responsible for making sure all of their passengers are properly secured. If found negligent, you will be fined $25 and have 1 point added to your driving record.

If you're in the market for one, you can shop for a car seat online at any time. When ordering, be sure the car seat matches your child's height, weight and age.

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