New York Has Plenty of Oddly Specific Driving Laws

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If you live in New York or plan to visit, you might want to examine the driving and vehicle laws particular to the area you are in.
That’s because many towns and villages in New York have set some very specific and funny laws that don’t all apply to the whole state. Long Island villages and towns especially seem to have some very strict rules about cars, driving and parking.
The Manhattan skyline behind cars driving on the Long Island Expressway
There are driving laws specific to New York City, as well as the various towns and village in the state | Twenty20

New York State driving laws

Some of the laws make sense and are also found in other parts of the country. For instance, in New York, you cannot use hand-held devices while driving—no texting or calling, so you must use a hands-free feature instead. That’s a very common law often found in other areas as well.
Another common one found in New York and elsewhere is the seat belt law. In fact, last year New York State even modified its seat belt law, and now all passengers regardless of age or seat location must wear a seatbelt at all times. Previously, only adult passengers sitting in the front seat of a vehicle were required to wear a seatbelt.
But New York state also has its share of interesting and specific laws. For example, did you know that in New York, you are not allowed to speed past a sanitation truck, even if you think it’s moving too slow?
So hopefully if you are driving in New York and you are in a hurry, you don’t find yourself behind a slow-moving sanitation vehicle.

Weird New York driving laws in towns and cities

Here are some of the very specific and funny laws we found in Long Island, New York towns and villages:
  • In the town of Oyster Bay, cars must have regular emergency-type sounds—no funny noises or songs are allowed.
  • In the Village of Sag Harbor, it is illegal to disrobe in your vehicle.
  • In the village of Southampton, it is illegal to sleep in your car between the hours of 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. on any street, park, recreation area, beach access road or parking area owned, controlled, operated or maintained by the village.
  • In the Village of West Hampton Dunes, each residential home is permitted to have one parked car per bedroom, plus one extra, during overnight hours.
Also, if you find yourself driving in New York City, there’s a law you don’t always see in other places—you are never allowed to turn right on red, unless there is a sign indicating otherwise.

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