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United States Army
1520 Freedman Drive
Fort Detrick, MD 21702-5000
Figuring out the best way to get around is important when you’re in a new installation. It’s useful to understand the various regulations, local laws as well as license and registration requirements. Whether you need a driver’s license, transport a car overseas or want help buying a car, there are people to assist you at your new installation. Check out the topics below to find information and regulations on vehicles and registration at your base.
State laws vary when it comes to motor vehicle insurance requirements, licensing and registration. The term vehicle generally includes automobiles, motorcycles, vans, trailers and boats regularly parked or garaged overnight. Service members and their families will want to understand their state’s laws on registration and licensing before moving to a new state. Visit the USA.gov Motor Vehicle Services page for links to state-specific websites.
Maryland State law requires you to have sufficient liability insurance and a valid driver’s license in order to operate a vehicle. The term “vehicle” generally includes automobiles, motorcycles, vans, trailers and boats regularly parked or garaged overnight. Further, your vehicle must be properly registered. Even though you are in the Military, you may be required to register your vehicle in-state and obtain an in-state license within a few months of moving. Access complete information on insurance, driver’s licensing, and where and how to register your vehicle by visiting the State Department of Motor Vehicles website.
Vehicle registration decals are no longer issued. Federal ID's are used for access to the installation.
Vehicle Operation -- Valid state of domicile licenses for military members and dependents are honored and are required to operate a vehicle on post.
Vehicle Checks -- State Requirement: (1) Active duty personnel arriving from overseas assignments must have their vehicles properly registered within 30 days of the arrival of their vehicles. (2) No need to pre-register active duty bearing current tags of member's state of domicile. (3) Vehicles registered in name of dependent must be registered within 30 days.
Speed Limits -- Maximum speed for the installation is 25 MPH, 15 MPH for housing areas, and 10 MPH when passing Physical Training or troop formations.
Cell Phones -- Cell phones are not allowed while driving without a "hands free" device. Blackberries or similar items, such as personal data assistants are prohibited as well. In addition, base regulation prohibits vehicle operator from viewing DVDs while driving on post. This code is now in effect and applies to all motorists operating a vehicle on Fort Detrick, to include visitors.
Drivers may use hands-free accessories that allow them to keep both hands free to control the vehicle and do not interfere with their ability to hear sirens or similar alarms. An earphone is authorized as long as it only covers one ear, leaving the other ear free to hear alarms and surrounding traffic.
Violators will receive a ticket that will include a $25 fine and a $25 administration fee. The maximum punishment for violations includes a fine and up to 30 days in jail. Any offense that involves the potential of time in jail may also include probation or community service.
Seat Belts -- Mandatory usage of seat belts for all passengers to include back seat passengers.
Child Safety Seat/Booster Seats -- All children younger than six years of age, regardless of weight, or who weigh 40 pounds or less, regardless of age, must be secured in a federally approved child safety seat.
Speed Detectors -- Prohibited use of radar or laser speed detectors on post, except by law-enforcement personnel.
Accidents/Point System -- All traffic accidents must be reported to the Provost Marshal's Office (PMO)immediately. Vehicles involved in accidents should not be moved until the arrival of PMO. When PMO assesses points, a report is sent to Maryland DMV and then to the state the license was issued and points are assessed on your license.
Motorcycle Riders -- Motorcycle riders are required to wear helmets and protective clothing. All motorcycle riders must complete a motorcycle safety course to ride a motorcycle on post.
State and local laws regulate the operation of motor vehicles, and these laws can vary by location. Many states regulate the following:
Learn more about motor vehicle laws in your state at the Distraction.gov State Laws page.
You and your passengers must always wear seatbelts while driving, you will be ticketed and issued heavy fines if seatbelts are not secured. State law requires that all children under 6 years of age and 40 pounds be properly restrained in child seats. Some states also require younger, smaller children to sit in the back seat.
Motorcycles and their operators are subject to special laws. If you own and operate a motorcycle, you must comply with those laws. Visit the State Department of Motor Vehicles website for more information.
Many States and local jurisdictions have strict laws about the use of cell phones and other digital devices while driving. Research these laws on the State Department of Motor Vehicles website. Tickets will be issued and fines assessed for violating these laws. Play it safe and always use a “hands-free” device if you must use a cell phone or other PDA while driving. Hands-free devices must be used while operating a motor vehicle on ALL military installations worldwide.
Effective October 1, 2010 – This new law in Maryland prohibits all drivers from using a cell phone without a Hands-Free Device while operating a motor vehicle. The fine for the first offense will be $40.00 and subsequent offenses will be $100. The new law will be a secondary offense, meaning that the driver must first be committing a primary offense such as speeding, running a red light or other traffic violation before they could be ticketed for a Cell Phone offense.