Report Highlights State Traffic Safety Trends in 2017


Drugged Driving, School Buses and Bike Safety Were Key Topics

NCSL press release Denver—In 2017, state legislators debated nearly 2,000 traffic safety bills. Hot topics included seat belts on school buses, drugged driving, and bicyclist and pedestrian safety, according to a report released by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

The report, “Traffic Safety Trends: State Legislative Action 2017,” examines federal and state legislation, and provides tables and charts detailing state traffic safety laws.

Notable legislative trends included:

  • Drugged driving: In 2017, five states enacted legislation that in some manner addressed drug-impaired driving. Three states focused on marijuana impaired driving, while two states bills were more broadly focused on several types of drugs and their impact on impaired driving.
  • School bus safety: State legislatures debated a significant number of school bus safety measures in 2017. Most legislative activity this year relating to school bus safety involved seat belts on school buses. In most years, approximately 10 states consider legislation in some way addressing seat belts on school buses. In 2017, that number approached 30.
  • Pedestrian and bicyclist safety: 2017 was an active year for new laws regarding bicyclist and pedestrian safety. These included laws regarding: Idaho stops, safe bicycle passing, the creation and expansion of trails and bicyclist safety task forces, pedestrian safety, vulnerable users and school safety.

View the report ”Traffic Safety Trends: State Legislative Action 2017.”


NCSL is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the states, commonwealths and territories. It provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues and is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of the states in the American federal system.