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Driving and Commuting

Driving and Commuting

Minot AFB Getting To and Around Driving and Commuting

 

Three U.S. highways run through Minot proper: east/west U.S. Highway 2 that leads to Interstate 29 at Grand Forks on the state’s eastern border; north/south U.S. Highway 83 that passes Minot Air Force Base north of town; and northwest/southeast U.S. Highway 52 that intersects Interstate 94 to the south.

North Dakota Highway 5 crosses north Ward County east/west; another east/west highway, North Dakota Highway 23, passes through Ryder, to the south; North Dakota Highway 28 starts in Foxholm, northwest of Minot, and continues north to Canada, where it becomes Saskatchewan Highway 8; and North Dakota Highway 50 comes east from Montana to just kiss the western edge of Ward County in Coulee.

The North Dakota Department of Transportation has information for motorists at www.dot.nd.gov, including a color-coded map of current road conditions statewide and an app for travel updates.

The state DOT assesses and designates road conditions on U.S. Highway 83 leading to Minot Air Force Base and roads in the surrounding area. On base, the 5th Mission Support Group commander decides if weather conditions are so hazardous that reporting for duty should be delayed or restricted after talking with Minot city officials and leaders of both wings.

Conditions are color-coded:

  • Green — normal travel conditions.
  • Yellow — degraded road and weather conditions requiring caution; use of cruise control is prohibited for drivers of government vehicles.
  • Red — hazardous conditions, equivalent to the state’s “No travel advised.” Storm and mission-essential personnel may drive but all other travel is restricted unless the 5th Bomb Wing or 91st Missile Wing’s commanders or those designated by them have given their permission.
  • Black — same as the state’s “Road closed,” meaning the environment is so dangerous that only storm-essential personnel and those responding to emergencies are allowed on the roads.

North Dakota Department of Transportation

Minot Driver’s License Site

Arrowhead Shopping Center
1600 Second Ave. SW
Minot, ND 58701 701-857-8221
www.dot.nd.gov
8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday

The North Dakota Department of Transportation issues driver’s licenses, identification cards and vehicle registration and provides other driving-related services. Find many of the required forms and general information at www.dot.nd.gov/manuals/manuals-publications.htm#driver.

Driver’s Licenses

Military personnel from elsewhere who are stationed in North Dakota may continue to drive with a valid driver’s license from their home state, but their civilian spouses must surrender their out-of-state license and obtain a North Dakota license within 60 days of establishing residency. A person is deemed a resident of North Dakota when they have lived there for 90 days.

The state spells out what is required for licensing, insurance and vehicle registration in its “Noncommercial Drivers License Manual — Class D,” which can be downloaded athttp://www.dot.nd.gov/divisions/driverslicense/docs/noncommercial-dl-manual-class-d.pdf.

Base safety office personnel also can provide information about getting a North Dakota driver’s license. Call 701-723-2239 or 701-723-3305.

Distracted Driving

Adults in North Dakota may use cellphones while driving when off base, but no one under 18 years old is permitted to do so. Texting while driving is prohibited for all ages.

Minot Air Force Base, like all U.S. military installations, stipulates that only hands-free phones may be used while operating a motor vehicle on base.

Vehicle Registration

Information associated with vehicle registration in North Dakota is available online at www.dot.nd.gov/divisions/mv/vehicle.htm#vehicleregistration.

Other Requirements

The state requires every motorist to carry liability insurance and have a valid driver’s license to operate a vehicle, which generally means automobiles, motorcycles, vans, trailers and boats, and the vehicle must be registered.

All vehicle occupants, driver and passengers alike, must wear seatbelts, and all children less than 7 years old, 57 inches tall or weighing 80 pounds must be properly restrained in child seats.

By state law, front window tinting in a vehicle cannot exceed 30 percent and must allow at least 70 percent of light to enter. Tinting on other windows must allow at least 50 percent light transmission. To see if your windows are legal, have them checked by the 5th Security Forces Squadron at the law enforcement desk on base.

If you’re involved in an accident on base, call the Security Police Desk sergeant at 701-723-3950.

North Dakota Highway Patrol

Minot Regional Office
2201 Sixth St. SE, Suite B
Minot, ND 58701 701-857-6937
9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Headquarters
600 E. Boulevard Ave., Department 504
Bismarck, ND 58505 701-328-2455
www.nd.gov/ndhp

The North Dakota Highway Patrol is in charge of enforcing traffic laws and laws where state property is involved, investigating crashes and reporting road conditions. The state has more miles of road per capita than any other state — about
166 miles per 1,000 people — so state troopers tend to work more independently than elsewhere.

North Dakota has more vehicles registered than it has residents but has the second-smallest Department of Transportation in the U.S., in terms of workers (Hawaii has fewer). Still, the state maintains more miles of road per maintenance employee than any other state.

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