Utah

Highway safety laws differ from state to state. The summary information here can be used to compare laws in specific categories. We monitor legislative changes and update this information as needed.

RESTRICTIONS ON CELLPHONE USE AND TEXTING
Hand-held ban no1
Young drivers all cellphone ban drivers younger than 18
Texting ban all drivers
Enforcement primary1
MAXIMUM POSTED SPEED LIMITS
Rural interstates (mph) 75; 80 on specified segments of road2 (effective 05/12/14)
Urban interstates (mph) 65
Other limited access roads (mph) 75
Other roads (mph) 65
YOUNG DRIVER LICENSING SYSTEMS
To get a learners license you must:
Have a minimum age of 153
YOUNG DRIVER LICENSING SYSTEMS
Before getting a license or restricted license you must:
Have a mandatory holding period of 6 months
Have a minimum supervised driving time of 40 hours, 10 of which must be at night3,4
Have a minimum age of 165
YOUNG DRIVER LICENSING SYSTEMS
Restrictions during intermediate or restricted license stage:
Nighttime restrictions midnight-5 a.m.
Passenger restrictions

(family members excepted unless otherwise noted)
first 6 months—no passengers6 secondary enforcement
YOUNG DRIVER LICENSING SYSTEMS
Minimum age at which restrictions may be lifted:
Nighttime restrictions 17
Passenger restrictions 16, 6 months6
REGULAR LICENSING RENEWAL CYCLE
Length of regular renewal cycle 5 years
OLDER DRIVER SPECIAL LICENSING PROVISIONS
Accelerated renewal none
Other provisions vision test required for people 65 and older
CHILD RESTRAINTS
Must be in child restraint 7 years and younger and shorter than 57 inches
Adult safety belt permissible 8 through 15 years; all children 57 inches or taller
Maximum fine 1st offense $45
Seating preference law states no preference for rear seat
Children not covered all children covered
SAFETY BELT USE
Initial effective date 04/28/86
Standard enforcement? no (yes for children <19 years)
Who is covered? In what seats? 16+ years in all seats
Maximum fine 1st offense $45
Can nonuse decrease monetary awards for injuries in lawsuits? no
MOTORCYCLE HELMET USE
Motorcyclists covered 17 and younger
BICYCLE HELMET USE
Covered by state law no law
PICKUP TRUCKS: RESTRICTIONS ON RIDING IN CARGO AREAS
Restrictions on riding in cargo areas yes[Cargo ]
Gaps in coverage off highway operation; employees performing their duties; people riding in a vehicle space that is intended for any load
LOW-SPEED VEHICLES
On which roads are low-speed vehicles permitted? roads with a posted speed limit of 35 mph or less
What is the top speed permissible for low-speed vehicles? 25 mph
MINITRUCKS
Initial effective date 10/01/08
Where permitted any road except an interstate freeway; limited access highway; street within a county of the first class; or a municipality that is within a county of the first class
Speed restrictions 45 mph
Vehicle classification under state law off-highway vehicle or street-legal all-terrain vehicle
AUTOMATED ENFORCEMENT: SPEED CAMERAS
Statewide or only specified locations? statewide only school zones or where limit is 30 mph or less; officer must be present; requires local ordinance
Violations speed
Citations issued to whom? not addressed
Who is liable? not addressed
What image is taken? photograph
Traditional enforcement penalty $1,000 maximum fine/50 points
Auto enforcement penalties/record not reportable; no points may be assessed

1In 2007, Utah defined careless driving as committing a moving violation (other than speeding) while distracted by use of a handheld cellphone or other activities not related to driving. IIHS reported this as the functional equivalent of a secondary law. In 2012, Utah’s law was modified to specify that a person is not prohibited from using a handheld wireless device while operating a moving motor vehicle when making or receiving a telephone call. In 2014, Utah again amended its law by removing the act of talking on a hand-held phone from the section describing careless driving. In addition, the most recent iteration bans drivers from dialing a hand-held phone and caps the maximum fine at $100 for a first offense provided the offender inflicted no bodily harm.

2In Utah, the speed limit may be increased beyond 75 mph on any freeway or limited access highway on the basis of an engineering and traffic investigation, effective May 12, 2014. The highest posted limit in Utah is currently 80mph.

3In Utah, permit holders younger than 18 may only drive under the supervision of a driving instructor, a parent or guardian, or a responsible adult who has accepted liability for the permit holder's driving by signing the permit application. Permit applicants younger than 19 must be enrolled in driver education.

4In Utah, supervised driving in the learner stage may include up to five hours in a driving simulator.

5In Utah license applicants who are younger than 19 must have completed driver education.

6In Utah, passenger restrictions end when a driver has been licensed for six months or when the driver turns 18, whichever occurs first.