New Traffic Laws

Several new traffic laws were adopted in the Louisiana Legislative session held earlier this year. Some of those new laws will be going into effect over the next few weeks.

New Seat Belt Rules
LRS 32:295.1(B) has been amended to require that all motor vehicle occupants who are 13 years of age or older shall wear a seat belt.

New Rules for Highway Lanes
LRS 32:71(B)(1) and LRS 32:71(C), (D), and (E) relate to lane usage on multi-lane highways throughout the state. Specifically, these statutes restrict vehicles to driving in the left-hand lane on multi-lane highways; to provide for a restriction regarding the speed of a vehicle traveling in a left-hand lane; and to provide for related matters.

Basically, these statutes aim to restrict the left-hand lane for passing. If you are driving in the left-hand lane and are not in the process of passing another vehicle or exiting the highway, you can be ticketed.

Enhanced DWI Laws
Several new laws strengthen the penalties for driving while intoxicated and increase the penalties for refusing to take a breathalyzer exam.

House Bill (HB) 445 provides that all Louisianans agree to provide a breath sample when property requested, as a condition of receiving a Louisiana driver’s license. With this new law, drivers’ license suspension penalties for refusing the breathalyzer will double from 180 days to 1 year on the 1st offense and increase from 18 months to 2 years on the 2nd offense.

State Police Website
There are several other new laws that may affect the citizens of St. Martin Parish. Please visit their website and click on “News Releases”, then “View Statewide News Releases”.