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«This driver’s guide has been prepared in easy-to-read language. It covers the most important points of safe driving and Louisiana’s traffic laws. ...»

-- [ Page 1 ] --

This driver’s guide has been prepared in easy-to-read language. It covers the most important points of safe

driving and Louisiana’s traffic laws. This guide tells how you can earn the privilege of driving and how to keep

that privilege. It will help you become and continue to be a safe driver. Necessary information for persons

preparing for their driver’s license examination is provided in this guide and also is an excellent review for

experienced drivers.

A commercial driver’s manual should be obtained to prepare for the commercial driver’s license examination for classes “A”, “B” and “C”.

A separate Motorcycle Driver’s Guide should be obtained to prepare for a motorcycle endorsement.


When you make an application for issuance or renewal of a Louisiana driver’s license, you may initiate the procedure to register to vote and/or update your voter registration information. Simply make it known to personnel at the Office of Motor Vehicles when you apply for a license. For more information concerning your right to vote, contact your nearest Voter Registrar’s Office or visit the website www.laelections.org.


Whether accidental or deliberate, littering is against the law. Depending on the nature and severity of the littering, you can face either civil or criminal prosecution. Penalties for conviction range from a $50 fine plus 8 hours community service picking up litter to a $5,000 fine, one year driver’s license suspension, 30 days in jail AND 100 hours of community service. The driver is responsible for all litter coming from the vehicle’s interior or truck bed, and the driver can be cited for littering committed by the passengers in his/her vehicle. To report litterbugs, call 1-888-LITRBUG. For more information concerning Louisiana’s litter abatement programs, visit the websites www.gov.state.la.us/keepabeautiful.htm and www.deq.state.la.us/assistance/litter/index/htm.

For more information concerning traffic laws and regulations, refer to Louisiana Revised Statutes, Title 32:

Highway Regulatory Act or visit the website www.legis.state.la.us.

For Louisiana alcohol and tobacco laws, refer to Louisiana Revised Statutes, Title 26.

For crash data, visit the website www.lsu.edu.

For National Traffic Safety programs and issues, visit the website www.nhtsa.dot.gov.

For information concerning the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections, visit the website www.dps.state.la.us.

For general information from the Office of Motor Vehicles, please call 225-925-6146.

For policy changes - see website for updates. www.expresslane.org DPSMV 2052 (R 02/11)


When you get your driver’s permit, driver’s license or state I.D., you will be asked if you would like

to register as an organ and tissue donor. Here is what you need to know to make the decision:

Every day 18 people die waiting for an organ.

• Every 13 minutes another name is added to the national waiting list.

• Today there are nearly 100,000 people on the na tional waiting list; alm ost 1,800 of these ar e • in Louisiana.

One organ donor can save 9 lives and enhanc e the lives of up to 50 m ore through tissue • donation.

Organs and tissues that can be donated in clude: heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, pancreas, • intestines, corneas, heart valves, skin, veins, tendons, ligaments and bones.

All major religions approve of organ, eye and tissue donation, and see it as an unselfish act of • charity.

Donation does not prevent an open casket funeral.

• Anyone can potentially be a donor regardless of age, race, or medical history.

• It is illegal to buy or sell organs in the United States.

• It is illegal to distribute organs based on wealth, citizenship, or celebrity status.

• Your decision to donate will not interfere with life-saving medical care.

• There is no cost to the donor or their family for organ, eye and tissue donation.

• Transplantation has more than an 80% success rate, and is not experimental. Organ donation • is not a search for a cure- it is the cure!

Louisiana has a first person consent registry. This allows citizens to m ake legally binding • decisions to be organ donors. Family consent is required only for minors.

For more information call 1.800.521.GIVE or visit:

www.donatelifela.org, www.organawareness.org, www.lopa.org, www.unos.org


–  –  –

Part I explains how to get your driver’s license, how to renew it, and how it can be taken away.

It also states the title and license requirements when purchasing a new or used vehicle.

Chapter 1 - Getting a Driver’s License Who Must Have a Driver’s License

New Residents

Classes of License

Identification Requirement

Social Security Requirement

Immigrant Aliens


Non-Immigrant Aliens

Choice of Name

Age Requirement

Proof of Insurance



Change of Address

Change of Name

Duplicate License

License Restrictions

Medical Reports Required

Your Driving Record

Personal Identification Cards

Driver’s License Tests

Chapter 2 - Motor Vehicle Registration and Title New Vehicles

Used Vehicles

New Residents

Proof of Insurance

Registration Certificate



Motor Vehicle Inspection Sticker

–  –  –

Part II covers the information with which you should be familiar before taking the driver’s license knowledge test.

Chapter 3 - Signs, Traffic Lights, and Pavement Markings Traffic Signs

Traffic Signals

Pavement Markings

Chapter 4 - Basic Driving and Safety Entering and Starting Your Vehicle

Getting Ready to Drive

Use of Safety Belts

Vehicle Condition

Driving Under Stress

Driver Fatigue

Drowsy Driving

Defensive Driving

Aggressive Driving

Road Rage

Looking Ahead

Rear View Mirrors

Blind Spots

Keeping a Space Cushion

Stopping Distances

Following Distances

Turning Around on a Narrow Street

Parking on Hills

Angle Parking

Parallel Parking

Passing Parked Cars


Driving on Wet Pavement


Steering Wheel Locking Devices

Night Driving

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrians Who Are Blind

Cellular Phones

Sharing the Road with Bicycles

Sharing the Road with Motorcycles

Sharing the Road with Big Trucks

Chapter 5 - Traffic Laws and Regulations Police Officers

Traffic Control

Control of Vehicles


Lane Changing


Stopped School Buses

Driving on Divided Highways



Right of Way


Railroad Grade Crossing

Other Laws You Should Know

Chapter 6 - Interstate Driving Planning Ahead

General Interstate Driving



Right-Hand Lane


Weather Changes

Chapter 7 - Driving Emergencies Teenage Drivers

Avoiding Collisions

Protecting Yourself in a Crash

Other Vehicle Emergencies

Traffic Crashes

Approach of an Authorized Emergency Vehicle

Chapter 8 - Driving Offenses Alcohol


Vehicular Homicide

Vehicle Negligent Injury

Reckless Driving

Hit and Run Driving

Flight From an Officer

Alcohol Analysis Test

Losing Your Driving Privileges

Chapter 9 - General Information for Class D License Vehicle Size



Following Distance


Railroad Stops


Trailers and Towed Vehicles




Part 1 Driver and Vehicle Licensing Information

–  –  –

Driving is a privilege, not a right!


You must have a Louisiana driver’s license if you are a resident of Louisiana and want to drive a motor vehicle on public streets and highways. Always carry your license with you when driving.

You are required to show it to any police officer or any officer or agent of the department who may ask to see it.


You do not need a Louisiana driver’s license if:

• you are a non-resident and possess a valid license issued by another state. You are permitted to drive in this state for a period of 90 days.

• you are a student and possess both a valid driver’s license issued by your home state and a current student ID card.

• you are operating a farm tractor, farm implements, or road machinery temporarily on the highway.

• you are a member of the Armed Forces driving a U.S. government vehicle while on official duty.

• you are a resident member of the Armed Forces or resident military dependent possessing a valid driver’s license from your home state.


All applicants for a Louisiana driver’s license will be required to take and pass a visual exam administered by the Office of Motor Vehicles personnel at the time of application. New residents have 30 days from the time residence is established to obtain a Louisiana license. In order to make application, you must have a valid Louisiana address.

1. If you have a valid/expired out-of-state picture license, you must:

• surrender the out-of-state picture license. It is unlawful in Louisiana to have more than one driver’s license.

• provide one primary document (see pages 5 and 6: ID requirements).

• provide proof of social security number (see page 7: Social Security Requirement).

• provide proof of insurance on any personal vehicle you may have registered in Louisiana.

2. If you are not in possession of your out of state picture license, you must:

• submit either a letter of clearance or an official driving record from your last state of license.

This letter must include your personal information (name, date of birth, social security number, if applicable) as well as your license number for that state.

• meet all identification and social security requirements (see page 5-7).

3. Vision testing is required at every issuance. If your license is expired:

• less than 1 year; only a vision test is required.

• one (1) year, but less than 2 years; a vision test, written exam and traffic signs exam are required.

• two (2) or more years; a vision test, written exam, traffic signs exam and road skills (driving) test are required.


The class of driver’s license you will need depends on the type of vehicle you plan to drive and if you are employed for the principal purpose of driving. This manual applies only to class “D” and “E” drivers’ licenses.

CLASSES “A”, “B”, and “C” - Commercial Drivers’ Licenses (CDL) are generally required for drivers of large cargo trucks, commercial passenger vehicles or for the commercial transportation of hazardous materials. To determine if you need a class “A”, “B”, or “C” license, please consult the Commercial Driver’s License manual for more information.

CLASS “D” - Permits the operation of any single vehicle used in commerce having a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more but less than 26,001 pounds or any such vehicle towing a vehicle not in excess of 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight rating, and not utilized for the transportation of hazardous materials. NOTE: As long as the combined gross vehicle weight rating (truck and trailer) is less than 26,001 pounds, you can operate with Class “D”. A class “D” license may be used for transportation of passengers for hire or fee provided the usage thereof does not fall within the definition of vehicles in classes “A”, “B”, or “C”. A class “D” allows for operation of those vehicles in the class “E” category.

CLASS “E” - Permits the operation of any single motor vehicle under 10,001 pounds, recreational vehicles and certain farm use vehicles not defined as commercial vehicles.

*If you are driving interstate commerce, you must also meet Department of Transportation (DOT) physical standards. This matter should be discussed with your employer.


You must prove who you are and your date of birth when applying for a Louisiana driver’s license.

One primary and two secondary documents or two primary documents are required as proof of identification. Photocopies are not acceptable whether notarized or not.



1. Certified copy of birth certificate with raised state/county seal, original certificate of live birth or birth registration card with state/county raised seal.

2. Passport. Foreign passports must be accompanied by appropriately immigration documents.

3. Certificate of Naturalization. (No photocopies)

4. Valid U. S. Military identification card/dependent military identification card.

5. Merchant Mariner’s ID with photo (Z card).

6. Native American tribal documents.

7. Permanent Resident Card (I-551).

8. Department of Public Safety and Corrections prison ID card containing photograph, name, race, sex and date of birth.

9. The Office of Homeland Security Refugee travel document (I-571).

10. The Office of Homeland Security Permit to reenter the United States (I-327).

11. Employment authorization document issued by The Office of Homeland Security.

12. Certification of birth abroad issued by the US Department of State.

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