Tennessee

GHSA maintains data on state laws surrounding a number of highway safety issues. Below is information regarding laws in the state of Tennessee. For more information, consult the State Highway Safety Office.

  • Alcohol Impaired Driving

    Penalties

    Increased Penalty for High BAC Administrative License Suspension on First Offense Limited Driving Privileges During Suspension
    .20 1 year Yes

    Ignition Interlocks

    Mandatory for repeat convictions; highly incentivized for first convictions

    Other

    Open Container Laws Repeat Offender Laws
    No Yes
  • Autonomous Vehicles

    Authorizes full deployment of AVs without a human operator.

  • Bicyclists and Pedestrians

    Bicycle helmets required for all riders under 16.

  • Child Passenger Safety

    Child Restraint Required

    Under 1 yrs or 20 lbs or under in rear-facing infant seat

    1-3 yrs and over 20 lbs in forward-facing infant seat

    4-8 yrs and under 4'9" in booster seat

    8 yrs or under and over 4'9" in rear seat if available

    Rear seat recommended for 9-12 yrs

    Adult Safety Belt Permissible

    9-15 yrs (or 12 yrs and under and over 4'9")

  • Distracted Driving

    Hand-Held Ban?

    Yes. Primary law.

    All Cell Phone Ban?

    School Bus Drivers

    Yes. Primary law.

    Novice Drivers

    Drivers with learner or intermediate license. Primary law.

    Text Messaging Ban?

    All drivers, while vehicle is in motion. Primary law.

  • Drug Impaired Driving

    DUID Zero Tolerance or Per se Laws for Some Drugs

    • None

    Marijuana-Specific Laws

    • Possession and Use: Illegal
    • Impaired Driving: None
  • Mature Drivers

    Length of Regular Renewal Cycle

    8 years

    Provisions for Mature Drivers

    60 and over: fee reduced

    65 and over: no expiration

     

  • Motorcyclists

    Universal helmet law enacted 1967.

  • Seat Belts

    Type of Law

    Primary

    Who Is Covered?

    16 and over

    In What Seat?

    Front

  • Speed and Red Light Cameras

    Speed Cameras

    State Law

    Permitted by state law

    Where Permitted

    In school zones; on any S-curve that inhibits a driver's vision through the bend


    Red Light Cameras

    State Law

    Permitted by state law and city ordinance

    Where Permitted

    Statewide

  • Speeding and Aggressive Driving

    Rural Interstates

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    70 70

    Urban Interstates

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    70 70

    Other Limited Access Roads

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    65 65
  • Teen and Novice Drivers

    Full Privilege Minimum Age

    17 years

    Learner Stage

    Minimum Age (Years/Months)

    Minimum Duration (Months)

    Required Supervised Driving Hours (Night Hours)

    15 6 50 (10)

    Intermediate Stage

    Minimum Age (Years/Months)

    Nighttime Driving Restriction

    Passenger Restriction (except family, unless noted)

    16 11 p.m. - 6 a.m. No more than 1