Nevada Bikes and Bike Lane Laws Explained

There is often confusion regarding how to share the roadways with those riding bicycles. This short video will help clear things up. The important things to remember are that bicycles are not considered motor vehicles, but they do have the right to operate on the roadway just like a vehicle. That means if there is a bicycle traveling in your lane, he has the right of way. You can pass them if and when it is legal to do so.

Also, it is illegal for a motor vehicle to travel or park in a bicycle lane. Unfortunately, however, this is a very common problem you will see on the roadways. If you look closely, you will often see vehicles driving in the bicycle lane prior to making a right turn. This is not legal! You can only cross a bicycle lane in your vehicle when you are making a turn into a private drive (shopping center, gas station, etc). You cannot drive in the lane to prepare for your turn.

Also, a motor vehicle cannot park on a bicycle lane. This is also a very common problem in Nevada. People park in bike lanes while waiting to pick children up for school, near parks and crowded areas, etc. This can be a very costly ticket!

Watch this video produced by NV Drivers Ed for details!

New Law for Nevada Teen Drivers

On January 1st, 2015, a new law went into effect that has a significant impact on Nevada teens who are eager to get their Nevada driver’s license. This new law requires a certification that the child meets the Nevada school attendance requirements set forth by law. This only affects teens under the age of 18-years old.

Now, when a teen applies for a Nevada instruction permit, they must submit a Nevada DMV form 301 (Certification of Attendance). This form can be downloaded from the Nevada DMV website here: or you can get the form from our Las Vegas driving school.

If the teen obtained their instruction permit prior to January 1st 2015, they must submit form 301 at the time they take their driving skills test.  This same form is also used to suspend or deny the driving privileges of any teen under the age of 18 when declared truant. As you can see on the form, it is completed by the school principal or school official who verifies the student meets attendance requirements.

The new law falls under Nevada Revised Statute 392.123 which requires the school to complete a written form that indicates whether or not the student has fulfilled the school district’s minimum attendance requirement. If the student has a history of truancy, they will be denied the applicable instruction permit or Nevada driver license.

The purpose of this law is to encourage school attendance and to provide a “punishment” for those who are habitually truant. Most of us would agree that a student that does not meet the required attendance requirements, barring a medical condition, could be considered to be irresponsible and therefore, not worthy of sharing the roads with responsible drivers.

This new law will have profound effects for teen drivers and should be a factor in increasing teen driving safety in the Las Vegas area. For more information regarding this new law, please contact us at

Las Vegas Driver’s Ed

If you’re a teen under the age of 18 years old and you’re seeking a driver’s license, you need to know that Nevada law requires you to take a 30-hour driver’s education course before you are eligible to obtain a full Nevada driver’s license. Understand that this requirement is in addition to the required written test need for your instruction permit, 50 hours of supervised driving experience and, of course, the driving skills test. The purpose of this article is to explain the Las Vegas drivers ed requirement and what you should expect when taking such a course.

The first thing to know is that there are two methods of which you can fill the Las Vegas drivers ed requirement. One method is to take the 30-hour course in a traditional classroom setting. This can be in a high school or through a Las vegas driving school that is licensed by the Nevada DMV. In the past, nearly all high schools in Las Vegas offered driver’s ed as an elective. Unfortunately, however, due to severe budget cuts over the past few years, many schools have eliminated driver’s education from their curriculum.

The god news is that if you are seeking to attend driver’s ed in Las Vegas in a classroom setting, there are still a couple licensed driving schools that offer the course. The bad news is that these classroom courses outside of high school are somewhat inconvenient. Typically, these courses require the student to attend two Saturdays and two Sundays in a row for 7 1/2 hours each day. That’s two weekends that you will have to spend in a classroom. The other downfall of taking Las Vegas driver’s ed at a driving school is the cost. Unlike online classes, which are very inexpensive, a classroom course will cost $100 or more!

At our Las Vegas driving school, we have been approved by the Nevada DMV to offer the required 30-hour driver’s ed course completely online. This means your required 30-hours drivers ed can be taken on any device with internet access. This includes desktop computer, laptop computer, tablet (ipad, etc) and even on your smartphone. So, rather than sitting in class for two weekends, you can finish the course on your own schedule. All you need to do is log in, read the text and watch the videos and animations. Many students take the course on their way to school, during breaks and anywhere they have a few minutes to spare.

All you need to do is log in and answer verification questions that you provide us. This is a security feature required by the DMV for all online driver’s education courses. Once you log in, you will be taken to where you left off last. When you finish the module, you answer a few practice questions. These practice questions are the same that will be asked on your final exam. They will prepare you to earn your driver’s ed certificate that you will than take to the DMV when you apply for your driver’s license.

Unlike the other online Las Vegas drivers ed courses, we provide our students all the tools they need to successfully pass their Nevada driving test. This includes bonus material (manuals, videos etc). So, we offer way more than just an online course. Also, you can take our entire course and final exam for free. You only pay once you are finished. Once payment is received, you will be taken to a link where you can instantly view and print your certificate. So, if you’re looking for a Las Vegas drivers ed course that can be taken anywhere and at anytime, be sure to visit us at

Distracted Driving Seminars for Teen Drivers

A Selma High School Resource Officer, Derek Gagnon, realizes that not all teen drivers will risk drinking & driving but he does believe the majority of teen drivers will encounter distractions while driving alone or with their friends. These could be conscious decisions like putting on makeup or texting while they drive but the distractions can also be simple things such as changing the station on the radio, opening a water bottle or simply looking over at their friend seated in the passenger seat of the vehicle. These minor distractions can, and often do, have deadly consequences.

On February 22, Gagnon, the Delma Police Department and the Selma Unified School District set out to share the dangers of drinking & driving as well as the effects of distracted driving with local students. The goal behind the effort was to increase awareness of drinking & driving and to show the dangers of distracted driving even if those distractions might seem innocent enough.

The presentation was part PowerPoint with some very sobering facts on teenage drinking and driving, distracted driving and driving while sleepy or fatigued. The remainder was a hands-on exercise where students were equipped with special goggles that simulate an intoxicated person’s vision. Students then tried to maneuver a golf cart around a closed track to see just how dangerous driving under the influence can be.

For the full story in Selma, visit this link:

Las Vegas Driving School Offers Teen Distracted Driving Seminars 

NV Drivers Ed, a local Las vegas driving school, offers similar programs throughout the Vegas Valley at various times and locations throughout the year. These seminars can be eye-opening to new and soon-to-be teen drivers. Inevitably, there is always something that teens take away from this type of training and it could be the “light bulb” that goes off when teens contemplate doing something that they know is wrong when operating a vehicle.

NV Drivers Ed uses a golf cart on a closed course so that licensed and non-licensed teens can participate. The program is completely supervised to ensure the safety of all involved. The program includes video presentations and hands-on, behind-the-wheel training. The course is expected to have a positive impact on all teens and it is geared to make them think twice about the consequences of distracted driving before they get behind the wheel. We have found that this type of hand-on training has a more profound effect on teen decision making rather than just watching videos or reading text.

If your teen could benefit from this type of training, please watch for future updates of times and locations in the Las Vegas area or contact NV Drivers Ed at 702-907-9992 for more details.

Consumer Reports Ranks the Safest Used Cars Under $10,000 for Teen Drivers

The parents of our student drivers often ask the staff members at our Las vegas driving school about the safest cars for teen drivers. As luck would have it, Consumer Reports recently ranked the top 10 safest cars for teens. Better yet, the rankings are only for vehicles that are under $10,000. Both Volkswagen and Ford made the list twice. Volkswagen with the Jetta and Golf and Ford with the Focus and Fusion.

Consumer Reports lists one of the most important safety features as “electronic stability control” or ESC. ESC has been statistically proven to be the most important piece of safety equipment since the seatbelt was invented. The purpose of ESC is to keep the vehicle on the road during emergency situations, which helps prevent rollover accidents.

Another important safety feature that Consumer Reports recommends is side and curtain airbags. These have shown to keep vehicle occupants inside the vehicle during automobile accidents.

And finally, the size of the vehicle was an important factor by Consumer Reports. While many parents seek “big” vehicles for their new teen drivers, these typically result in far more parking lot dings and scratches. Also, mid size sedans were recommended over SUVs due to the lower center of gravity, better stability and reduced chance of rollover.

Here’s the rest of the Consumer Reports article

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is driving while engaging in any activity that draws a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving.  Today, the largest group of people who think they can beat the odds involved in distracted driving are drivers under the age of 20, who make up 11% of all drivers involved in fatal crashes caused by distracted driving.

This should not come as a surprise: Any driver under 20 today is part of the electronic-media generation, known for taking great pride in their ability to multitask.  They have apparently gone from the early-teen remark, “Oh, I always do my homework while I’m watching TV, on the phone and tweeting” to the later teen boast that they can drive and, even if they are obeying the law and aren’t texting, can still chat with friends in the back seat simultaneously.

Anyone who believes that driving is an area where multitasking is a useful ability simply does not understand what’s at stake.

To get an idea of why that’s so, consider a simple everyday thought like this:  “I’m hungry.”  OK, now you remember the food in the bag somewhere nearby.  How long might it take, for example, to find a bag (searching with one hand) and then dig through it to find a sandwich, and then success!.. but you still need to unwrap it and then…….you get the picture.  The car is rolling all this time.

How Many Seconds Was That?  

You might say “just a few” but consider this:

At 60 mph— less than freeway speed— if you glance down for just 2 seconds to unwrap a sandwich, insert a CD, or change the climate control, you have traveled blindly for 176 feet – more than half the length of a football field!

Some trusting souls think they can overcome this situation by making sure the steering wheel remains in a fixed position going straight ahead — by keeping one hand on the wheel or by propping the wheel against their knees.  This might work in a controlled experiment in a lab with a dry track, but out on the road, look out!

Any sudden thing that comes up that you didn’t see before—even if’s not a big thing like a car but “a little itty-bitty thing” like a puddle or a patch of gravel covering the road – can present a hazard. With eyes off the road, you won’t be able to take evasive action.  Even if you do look back to the road in time, you’ll most likely need to have both hands available instantaneously to avoid disaster.

Distracted Driving is not Just Physical

Human beings have a wide range of different emotions and all of them can cause different effects when driving. One of the main effects is simply distraction; when drivers are emotional they are focused on the particular emotion or thought that is making them feel that way instead of the situation on the road.

This is the main problem with any emotional state while driving:  it causes distraction, and it doesn’t make any difference whether the driver is emotionally upset or the opposite: occupied with positive thoughts. No matter what, drivers must focus on the task at hand, so the best drivers are those who are able to block out any irrelevant thoughts during the period of time that they’re behind the wheel.

Some of the physiological effects of emotions include an increased heart rate, the release of adrenalin, which can cause a wide range of different effects, an inability to focus, restlessness, muscle tension, upset stomach, chest pain, fatigue, and many other symptoms. Clearly all of these symptoms can have a major effect on a person while they are driving, and they can most definitely affect the operation of the vehicle. Drivers must be aware of their emotional state and understand the importance of focusing on the act of driving to guarantee their safety and the proper operation of the vehicle.

Head Restraints

Neck injuries are reported by more than 1 in 5 drivers that are struck in a rear-end collision. Proper use and/or adjustment of the head restraint can protect you from neck injury if you are involved in a traffic collision.

The problem, however, is that many drivers do not know the proper and safest position for their vehicle’s head restraint. Not only is that a problem, but you should also know that not all head restraints are the same. Some do not adjust at all, while others adjust up and down. Some adjust up and down and/or tilt back and forth. Before entering your vehicle,
you should know how to adjust your head restraint and use this information on how to adjust it properly for you.

Proper Head Restraint Use

To ensure your head restraint offers you the best protection possible, you should be seated in an upright, comfortable sitting or driving position, facing forward. While in this position, you should reach behind you to adjust the head restraint. Ideally, the top of the head restraint should be even with the top of your head and no lower than 2 ½ inches below the top of your head. If the head restraint has a lock, make certain that it is locked in place when you have it adjusted to the right height.

Once you have the proper height on the head restraint, you should now check the distance between your head and the head restraint. Your head should be as close to the restraint as possible and no further than 2 ½ inches away. If you have a tilting head restraint, it should be adjusted accordingly. If yours doesn’t tilt, you may be able to make an adjustment by adjusting the height of the seat.

Avoiding Airbag Problems

From 1990 to 2000, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration identified 175 deaths caused by air bags. Most of those deaths (104) were children. Although that number is high, during that same time period, there were 3.3 million airbag deployments, which are estimated to have saved 6,377 lives and to have prevented countless injuries.

Because of the disproportionate amount of child deaths caused by airbag deployment, it is now recommended that children 12 years old and younger always ride in the rear seat using appropriate safety belts.

There are risks of injury occurring as a result of airbag deployment. The most common injuries are minor cuts, bruises and abrasions. While this is not ideal, keep in mind that these same airbags have prevented thousands of deaths, skull fractures and serious brain injuries.

Distance From The Airbag:

One of the best ways to prevent possible injuries from airbag deployment is by creating distance between you and the airbag, and by using proper hand position on the steering wheel when driving.
The most common factor in airbag injury and death is that the occupant was too close to the airbag when it deployed. This is a combination of not being restrained and moving closer to the airbag because of that, or simply because the seated position was too close in the first place.
It is recommended that there be at least 10-inches between the center of the airbag cover and your breastbone when the vehicle is in motion. The more you manage to maintain this 10-inch distance (or more), the safer you will be when the airbag deploys.

Steering Wheel Hand Position:

As we discussed previously, for years, driver education taught that the best place to keep your hands on the steering wheel while driving was at 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock (that is, if you think of the steering wheel as an analog clock, then the positions are at 10 and 2).

However, after airbags were introduced as standard equipment on our vehicles, it was found that there as an increase in wrist fractures due to airbag deployment. Because of that, it is now generally recommended that drivers use a 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock hand position— which gives the hands and arms a safer position in the event of airbag deployment.

Flashing Yellow Arrows

A left turn is one of the most dangerous maneuvers a new driver makes, especially when those left turns are what are known as “unprotected” turns. A “protected” left turn means that the driver has a green left turn arrow that specifically stops oncoming traffic to give the driver the right of way. An unprotected turn, on the other hand, is one where the driver does not have the right of way and must yield to oncoming traffic. These are usually signified by a green “ball” signal or the new flashing yellow turn arrow.

The flashing yellow turn signals have become commonplace on Nevada roadways in the recent months. The purpose of these lights is to create a safer left turn while also reducing traffic congestion. When you see a flashing yellow arrow, the signal means that traffic is allowed to make an “unprotected” left turn after yielding to oncoming traffic and pedestrians. Once the vehicle has yielded to oncoming traffic and pedestrians, the driver may make the left turn with caution.

After the yellow arrow flashes and then becomes a steady, non-flashing, yellow arrow the driver should treat it the same as a standard yellow light, being prepared to stop or safely clear the intersection prior to the red light appearing.

You can view the flashing yellow light traffic sequence here:

Making Safe & Proper Lane Changes

One of the biggest reasons that new drivers fail the driving portion of their Nevada DMV skills test is due to making unsafe lane changes. While experienced drivers make lane changes look easy, understand that this is one of the most difficult maneuvers for a new driver to make. As such, great caution should be taken when teaching the new driver how to make a safe and proper lane change.

The biggest reason that a lane change is deemed to be unsafe is due to the driver failing to check their blindspot. I have found that most drivers remember to activate their turn signal and know to check their rearview and side-view mirrors but many forget or never learn to turn their head and look over their shoulder to check their blindspot before making the move into the intended lane.

That being said, here are the steps you should take to ensure you are making a proper and safe lane change:

  1. Activate the appropriate turn signal to indicate the direction of your lane change
  2. With the turn signal activated, check your rearview and sideview mirrors to ensure that you can safely move into the intended lane.
  3. After checking the mirrors, immediately turn your head to look over the shoulder to check your vehicle’s blindspot for the direction of your intended lane change. Every vehicle has its own blindspots where vehicles can “hide” out of view of the rear and side view mirrors.
  4. If the blindspot is clear, “glide” smoothly into the intended lane. Remember that a lane change takes very little steering input and it should be more of a smooth “gliding” movement rather than turning the steering wheel. Adding too much steering wheel input results in an abrupt “jerky” movement that needs to be eliminated. It will take some practice to achieve a smooth lane change.
  5. Once the vehicle is completely in the lane, deactivate the turn signal.

Another common and very unsafe mistake that the new driver tends to make is that they “take” the vehicle with them when they turn their head to look over their shoulder when checking their blindspot. For many new drivers, when they turn their heads to look over their shoulder, they have the very unsafe tendency to move their hands/arms at the same time. The result of this is the vehicle moving into another lane while the driver is looking back to check their blindspot. You can be certain that if you are making a lane change while looking backwards, you will fail your Nevada driving test.

To avoid this common problem, I teach my students to push their back firmly against the seat and to grip the steering wheel more firmly while concentrating on moving their head rather than their entire body when checking their blindspots. It is important to note that checking the blindspot does not mean contorting the body to look out the rear window of the vehicle, as many new drivers tend to due.

A good way that I have found to break the habit of turning the body and the unintended action of the vehicle moving is to first locate the blindspots of your particular vehicle. As a general rule, the blindspotsare approximately 5-feet behind the vehicle and 3-feet out away from the vehicle. With the student seated in the vehicle, they should not be able to see a person standing at this location using their mirrors. Likewise, the person standing in the blindspot, should not be able to see the driver through the side-view mirror.

From this point, with the vehicle off and in park , the driver should practice turning their head 50-100 times quickly looking over their shoulder in order to see the person standing in their blindspot and looking back at the road in front of them.

Remember, checking the blindspot should be done very quickly. Many new drivers look back for too long, as if they are searching for something that is hiding from them. The point is, if a driver checks their blindspot, they will immediately see something if it is there. So, a quick check of the blindspot is all that is needed. Quickly checking the blindspot ensures nothing is there and it allows the driver to focus back on the road ahead of them quickly.

Determine if there is Enough Room to Safely Make the Lane Change

It is virtually impossible to teach speed and closing distance to a new driver. This is something that is learned through driving experience. When making a lane change, it is extremely important to ensure that there is enough room for you to safely enter the adjacent lane. Judging this depends upon the speed and the distance of the vehicle occupying the lane you want to enter. With practice, the new driver will learn to gauge speed and distance. When just learning, it is important to be extra cautious when other vehicles are near you when you are changing lanes.

Maintain Speed

Another common mistake with the new driver making lane changes is that with some much to think about, they often have a tendency to let off the gas and slow the vehicle down. This is extremely dangerous and can result in a serious traffic collision. If vehicles are traveling 45mph and you move into the lane next to you at a significantly slower speed, you are asking for trouble. In heavy traffic, making lane changes is much more difficult.


Drivers should avoid making lane changes within an intersection as it can be extremely dangerous. This is because other vehicles are often entering and exiting the intersection as you travel through it. As such, they will be making their decisions based on your position in the roadway. Suddenly changing lanes upon entering or while in the intersection can result in serious traffic collisions.

Our Las Vegas driving school specializes in making difficult driving situations easy for teens and adults alike. If you’d like more information on taking driving lessons with one of our DMV licensed, professional driving instructors, give us a call today at (702) 907-9992.