Vehicle safety and laws
Alaska Motor Vehicle Crash Report
Alaska Statute 28.35.080- “Immediate Notice of Accident”- mandates that the driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in bodily injury, death, or “total property damage to an apparent extent of $2,000.00” shall by quickest means of communication notify their local police department, or the Alaska State Troopers if the accident occurs outside of a municipality.
The driver of a vehicle involved in such an accident is required to submit a written report to the State of Alaska’s Department of Administration within 10 days of the accident. This “citizens report form” provides both collision information, as well as certification of the driver’s insurance. Failure to submit this form can result in an administrative suspension of one’s driver’s license for failure to provide proof-of-insurance. Submission of this “citizens report form” is not required for those serious accidents where a police officer responds and completes an investigation and written report.
In the past, those involved in such accidents needed to come to their local police department or Trooper Post and pick up the citizen’s accident reporting form, fill it out, and mail it to Juneau. This process can now be done entirely on-line, with the necessary form.
Alaska Traffic and Vehicle Offenses
The University Police Department is providing, as a courtesy, the link to the State of Alaska's Department of Motorized Vehicles and the state of Alaska's Court System reference pages for traffic regulations and minor offenses.
Alaska's Seatbelt and Texting Laws
Implementation of Alaska's primary seat belt law - May 2006
Primary seat belt law permits a law enforcement officer to stop a vehicle and issue a citation for a seatbelt
violation even if it was the only violation observed.
- May 1989: Alaska State Legislature passes a law requiring seat belt use by all occupants
in a motor vehicle.
Failure to wear a seat belt for anyone over 16 years of age is a secondary traffic violation.
- January 2006: Alaska State Legislature amends the seat belt law making it a primary traffic violation.
- January 31, 2006: Alaska Governor Frank Murkowski signs the primary seat belt bill into law.
- May 1, 2006: Alaska’s primary seat belt law goes into effect.
- Primary seat belt law permits a law enforcement officer to stop a vehicle and issue a citation for a seatbelt violation even if it was the only violation observed.
Alaska's Texting While Driving Law
Sec. 28.35.161. Use of electronic devices while driving; unlawful installation of television, monitor, or similar device.
- A person commits the crime of driving while texting, while communicating on a computer,
or while a screen device is operating if the person is driving a motor vehicle, and
- the vehicle has a television, video monitor, portable computer, or any other similar means capable of providing a visual display that is in full view of a driver in a normal driving position while the vehicle is in motion, and the monitor or visual display is operating while the person is driving; or
- the person is reading or typing a text message or other nonvoice message or communication on a cellular telephone, personal data assistant, computer, or any other similar means capable of providing a visual display that is in the view of the driver in a normal driving position while the vehicle is in motion and while the person is driving.
- A person may not install or alter equipment described in (a) of this section that allows the images to be viewed by the driver in a normal driving position while the vehicle is in motion.
- Subsections (a) and (b) of this section do not apply to
- portable cellular telephones or personal data assistants being used for voice communication or displaying caller identification information;
- equipment that is displaying only
- audio equipment information, functions, and controls;
- vehicle information or controls related to speed, fuel level, battery charge, and other vehicle safety or equipment information;
- navigation or global positioning;
- visual information to
- enhance or supplement the driver's view forward, behind, or to the sides of the motor vehicle for the purpose of maneuvering the vehicle; or
- allow the driver to monitor vehicle occupants seated behind the driver;
- vehicle dispatching and response information for motor vehicles providing emergency road service or roadside assistance;
- vehicle dispatching information for passenger transport or freight or package delivery;
- information for use in performing highway construction, maintenance, or repair or data acquisition by the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities or a municipality; or
- information for use in performing utility construction, maintenance, repair, or data acquisition by a public utility; in this subparagraph, "public utility" has the meaning given in AS 42.05.990.
- Subsections (a) and (b) of this section do not apply to devices and equipment installed in an emergency vehicle, whether removable or permanently installed, or to the viewing of authorized screen devices by police, fire, or emergency medical service personnel if the user of the equipment or device reasonably believes the information on the device is necessary to respond to a health, safety, or criminal matter. In this subsection, "emergency vehicle" means a police, fire, or emergency medical service vehicle.
- It is an affirmative defense to a prosecution under (b) of this section that the equipment installed or altered includes a device that, when the motor vehicle is being driven, disables the equipment for all uses except those described in (c) of this section.
- A person who violates (a) of this section is guilty of
- a class A misdemeanor, unless any of the circumstances described in (2) - (4) of this subsection apply;
- a class C felony if the person's driving causes physical injury to another person;
- a class B felony if the person's driving causes serious physical injury to another person;
- a class A felony if the person's driving causes the death of another person.
- A person who violates (b) of this section is guilty of a class A misdemeanor.