UHP: Coronavirus makes some drivers think it's okay to ignore rules of the road

Licenses and registrations still have to be up to date
Posted at 12:13 PM, Mar 24, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY — With schools and businesses closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, there are fewer vehicles on our streets and highways.

Even some government agencies are on restricted schedules or closed, but the Utah Highway Patrol wants you to know its troopers are still on the job.

According to UHP troopers, some drivers think the pandemic means it’s open season for them to ignore the rules of the road.

Even though places like the Division of Motor Vehicles is impacted by the coronavirus, motorists still have to keep things like your drivers license, registration and insurance up to date.

Most if not all of those things can be taken care of online.

There is no grace period, and if a trooper spots you in violation, you will be stopped.

"Obviously we'll use common sense if it's expired or lapsed during this time," UHP Lt. Nick Street said. "Troopers will maybe still initiate a traffic stop but we're going to have an interaction to talk about the laws that you violated and don't think that there's carte blanche to go out there and drive however you want, speed, fail to register your vehicle."

Lt. Street also said troopers are doing everything they can to maintain social distance if and when they do have to make a traffic stop.

He said in most cases they never need to physically touch or handle a persons documents.

Lt. Street also said that public safety is the pinnacle of a UHP Trooper's job description, and one of the ways they do that is by conducting traffic stops when necessary and that’s not going to change.