Ohio Motorist Info

The following information is updated periodically. However, laws and regulations can change between updates. State statutes and local ordinances are the ultimate authorities for these issues.

Points of Interest

  • Ohio is notorious for small town speed traps and speed enforcement excesses.
  • You will be fined heavily if you don’t file an accident report with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles within 30 days.

Speed Limits

Rural Interstates: Cars 70, Trucks 70
Urban Interstates: Cars 65, Trucks 65
Other Limited Access Roads: Cars 70, Trucks 70

These speed limits apply unless a different limit is posted.

Absolute (Exceeding the speed limit is illegal per seregardless of whether it was safe under the specific conditions): Interstate highway speed limits
Presumed (Driving faster than the speed limit is only evidence of unreasonable speed–you can still argue that your speed was safe under the specific conditions): All other speed limits

Speed Limits Enforcement Techniques
Enforced through use of:
Pacing: Yes
Radar: Yes
Vascar: Yes
Automated Speed Enforcement: Yes
Aircraft: Yes
Laser: Yes

Ticket Payment Methods
Consult your ticket or clerk of courts

Allowed with provisions

Jury Trial Allowed
Speeding: Yes*
Parking: Yes*
Equipment: Yes*
DWI: Yes*

* Only when a jail sentence is a possible penalty.

Member of Nonresident Compact

Member of Driver License Compact

When and Where to File Accident Reports
Accidents involving death, personal injury, or property damage exceeding $400 must be reported immediately to the local authorities. If an injury occurs, or if there was at least $400 in property damage, and if the driver or owner of one of the vehicles in the accident doesn’t have auto insurance or acceptable financial responsibility coverage, the accident must be reported to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) within six months of the accident date.

Resident Insurance Requirements
Liability insurance is required (although some states allow posting a cash bond or such as an alternative)
Minimum Coverage Required:
Injury to one person: $12,500
All injuries: $25,000
Property Damage: $7,500

Phone/Texting Restrictions
Hand-Held Ban: Local option
All Cell Phone Ban: Drivers younger than 18
Texting Ban: All drivers
Enforcement: Primary: for drivers younger than 18/Secondary: for texting by all drivers

Other Regulations

  • Open intoxicants are prohibited in the vehicle.
  • The BAC level is .08%. Under age 18 BAC level is .02%.
  • Ohio has an administrative license suspension law and an implied consent law. The breathalyzer refusal penalty is a 1-year driver’s license suspension.
  • Rifles, shotguns, and handguns must be transported in a cased and unloaded condition; firearms carried in the passenger compartment must be cased and unloaded or in plain view with the actions open and unloaded.
  • Studded tires are permitted from November 1 to April 15.
  • Tire chains are not required.
  • Ohio has a secondary enforcement seat belt law.
  • Ohio has a mandatory child restraint law for passengers under 5 years of age and weighing less than 40 pounds, requiring the use of approved car safety seats.
  • Ohio has a mandatory motorcycle helmet law for persons under 18 years of age and for persons with less than one year of experience.
  • If you get stopped with a rider on a motorcycle under 18 with no helmet, you can be written a “Endangering the welfare of a child” ticket.
  • Registration is not required to be carried in the vehicle. Insurance card must be carried in the vehicle.

General Information
Telephone: 614/466-2660 (State Highway Patrol)
Emergency Cellular Phone Number: 877-7PATROL