Nevada lawmakers are working during their session and putting together new laws, including one proposed bill that aims to make traffic stops safer for those with disabilities. The law is referred to as Assembly Bill 161 (AB161) and was presented by Assemblyman C.H. Miller as well as the ACLU of Nevada. AB161, as well as other proposed bills, have until the end of Nevada’s legislative session (or June 5th) to pass. For more information on AB161, click here.
Assembly Bill 161
The proposed assembly bill allows drivers the choice to indicate if they communicate differently when they are obtaining a driver’s license. The proposed law includes those who are hard of hearing, with speech difficulties, and with autism. The hope of AB161 is to put law enforcement on alert that a person’s responses or behaviors during a police encounter may be related to how they behave and not in defiance of authority.
The Nevada Sherriffs’ and Chiefs’ Association, civil rights organizations, and the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office all back the proposed bill. The hearing for the bill included testimony from parents of children with autism who voiced their fears about how their children’s inability to communicate could place them in jeopardy with law enforcement due to misinterpretation of their behavior. According to statistics shared during the hearing from a survey on policing, 60% of respondents noted they were afraid for a loved one with autism in the event they came in contact with law enforcement.
There has been, however, some opposition to the proposed law despite the large amount of support. Some are concerned that the voluntary designation of a disability may result in discrimination when these identifications are presented at establishments. If the bill passes, additional training for law enforcement would be necessary. Finally, the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles Deputy Administrator noted that the proposed law would add a new classification and mandate changes to be made to the current code.
Nevada Traffic Stops
If you are stopped by a police officer while driving on the road, be sure to pull over to the right as quickly and as safely as possible for the circumstances. When you are pulling over, be sure to use your turn signals when you are changing lanes, and do not move so fast that you are speeding. Keep in mind that just because you pull over once an officer signals you to does not mean that you are guilty or confessing of violating any traffic law. Once you are pulled over and stopped, be sure to turn off the car engine and turn on the interior light of the vehicle if it is dark outside. Remain inside your vehicle unless the officer says otherwise, and wait until they ask for documentation before you start searching for your license or registration. Instead, it is best to keep your hands on the steering wheel in plain view to put yourself and the officer at ease, as routine traffic stops can turn dangerous quickly.
Contact Our Las Vegas Attorneys
If you were recently involved in a Nevada car accident caused by another driver, contact the experienced attorneys at H&P Law. We will guide you every step of the way and seek the monetary compensation to which you are entitled. Contact us today.