Traffic Safety Laws in Nebraska
Brush Up On Your Headlight Laws
- You must use your headlights from sunset to sunrise, switching to low beams once daylight draws nearer.
- It's unlawful to drive only using your parking lights during this time.
The Nebraska Driver's Manual has several tips on which beams to use at which time and how to get the most effective light from your headlights.
Always Wear Your Seat Belt
Drivers and front seat passengers must wear seat belts. Not doing so carries a fine of $25. However, this is a secondary law, which means you can't be cited for not wearing a seat belt unless you've already been cited for another violation.
Per Section 60-6,270, the following individuals are exempt:
- Those drivers and passengers with disabilities that make seat belt usage unsafe or impossible. Documentation from a physician is required.
- United States Postal Service workers making deliveries.
- Emergency medical professional providing care.
Child Car Seat Laws
Children up to the age of 8 years old must be in a U.S. Department of Transportation approved child safety seat. The kind of child safety seat will depend on the age, height, and weight of the child:
- Rear-facing child safety seats are required for children under 2 years old OR until they reach the maximum weight or height requirements set by the manufacturer.
- Back seat safety belts are required for children under 8 years old UNLESS the seat is already occupied by a child under 8 years old or there is no rear seat.
- Booster seats or safety belts are required for everyone from 8 to 18 years old.
In addition to these laws, Nebraska requires all childcare providers to secure children in an approved child safety seat and seat belt while driving. It is also illegal for anyone under 18 years old to ride in the cargo area of any vehicle. A violation of these laws will result in a $25 fine and 1 point against your driver's license.
Before ordering a child safety seat, be sure to read our article on How to Buy a Child Safety Seat.
For more information about child safety seats, check out Nebraska's Child Passenger Safety.
Don't Leave Your Child or Pet Unattended
According to Section 28-710, it's considered child abuse and neglect to leave a child who is 6 years old or younger unattended in a motor vehicle and goes against the Child Protection Act.
When left unattended in a motor vehicle, children (or pets) are at risk for bodily harm or death due to factors including extreme hot and cold temperatures, kidnapping, and tampering with the vehicle's gear setting or ignition.
Cell Phone Law in Nebraska
Cell phone use for learner permit and intermediate license holders is banned. It is also illegal for all drivers, regardless of age, to text while driving.
Helmets: Bicycles and Motorcycles
Bicycles and Helmets
Whether or not you have to wear a helmet while riding a bicycle depends on the community in which you're riding the bicycle. Each community has its own law regarding bicycle helmets, so it's best to check with your local officials.
In the meantime, Section 60-6,315 provides a number of other bicycle-related safety laws for you.
Motorcycles and Helmets
All motorcycle and moped drivers and passengers must wear helmets which meet the United States Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 218. The Highway Safety Division provides an online list of approved motorcycle helmets according to make, model, and style.
Reporting Unsafe/Drunk Drivers
The Nebraska Emergency Highway Help Line makes it possible for you to report impaired drivers, or drivers acting in unsafe manners. Simply call (800) 525-5555 or *55 from your mobile phone.
Research Nebraska's Safety Laws
Interested in learning more about Nebraska's safety laws? Check out:
- Chapter 60 of Nebraska's legislative statutes.
- The Nebraska Driver's Manual includes a variety of information, including safety belts, child restraints, and speed laws.
- Nebraska's Motorcycle Operator Manual dedicates several pages to motorcycle safety laws, including licenses and safety training, passengers, and helmets and other gear.
- The Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver's Licensing covers a plethora of requirements―including safety requirements―for commercial drivers.
- The Highway Safety Division of the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles specializes in keeping you up to date with safety laws.