Nebraska Car Insurance Driver’s Guide [Coverages + Advice]
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UPDATED: Oct 24, 2021
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Home of Warren Buffett and University of Nebraska football, not to mention the largest indoor rainforest in the United States: Nebraska offers something for everybody.
Historically home to a vast stretch of the Oregon Trail, Nebraskans and Americans alike are in for some of the most striking views in the nation when traveling across and throughout the Cornhusker State.
If you call some portion of the nearly 94,000 miles of roadways in Nebraska your homestretch, you’ll need a great car insurance plan to protect you, your family, your vehicles, and your fellow Cornhuskers.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to find the best possible plan. From customer service ratings to the all-important price point, by the end of this page, you’ll be a master.
Here you’ll find all the must-knows for Nebraska driving: car insurance providers, coverage and rates, state laws, and so much more. Off we go.
If you want to get the right to comparing quotes, we’ve made it simple. Just click here.
Nebraska Car Insurance Coverage and Rates
Spending the countless hours it takes to research all you need to know about car insurance rates on your own can seem impossible, and super frustrating. That’s what we’re here for. First up, facts on the insurance coverage needed in Nebraska and what rates to expect.
Especially if you live in Omaha, coverage is more important than maybe everywhere else in the country.
With the worst-ranked drivers in the U.S., having coverage to ensure you’re covered in case of an accident can save you from paying thousands of dollars out of pocket.
So what does Nebraska require? What are common-sense policy add-ons, and how do you choose which company is right for you? We’ll help you figure it out.
Nebraska’s Car Culture
Nebraskans love cars. As of 2019, Nebraska is home to 1,450,479 licensed drivers.
With over 2 million vehicles, that means there are more cars than people in this iconic state.
With a large portion of rural land, public transport options are limited in Nebraska outside of Lincoln and Omaha (the two largest cities). If you live outside of the city, like most Nebraskans, chances are you’ll be driving to get around.
Nebraska Minimum Coverage
Nebraska is a traditional “fault” state, which means if you cause an accident, you’re responsible for paying for any and all resulting damages.
Nebraska law requires all drivers to maintain “proof of financial responsibility.” For the majority of drivers, this means showing a certificate of insurance (proving you have at least the state-mandated minimum liability coverage). Or for some, it can be proof of a bond or certificate of deposit (typically in the amount of $75,000).
In Nebraska, the minimum limits for basic coverage are 25/50/25 for all motorists. This means vehicle owners are legally required to carry these minimum levels of liability insurance:
$25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in an accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle.
$50,000 for total bodily injury or fatality in an accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle.
$25,000 for property damage per accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle.
Though Nebraska does not require drivers to carry Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage, it is an optional add-on to protect you and your passengers if the at-fault driver has no insurance, insufficient insurance to pay out the full claim, or if you’re a victim to a hit-and-run.
Is it risky to only carry minimum coverage? That depends on your monthly budget and how comfortable you feel, leaving yourself open to potential litigation.
If you have assets or future assets that you wish to protect or could run into the issue of not being able to pay in case you are at-fault: you may want to consider increasing your liability coverage.
Experts at the Wall Street Journal recommend liability limits of 100/300/50 and offer the following advice for when choosing coverage limits:
Make sure you’re covered for an amount equal to the total value of your assets (Add up the dollar values of your house, your car, savings, and investments).
Please be aware that basic coverage only provides you with liability protection; It will not pay to repair or replace your car for an accident that you cause.
If you’re looking to repair or replace your car after an accident, collision and comprehensive coverage are worth the investment. These policies come with a deductible, and your insurer will payout based on the current value of your car (not always the price you paid for it).
Next up, we’ll look at the average cost of insurance in Nebraska. This data provides a framework from which you can get a better idea of your situation with reasonable accuracy.
Premiums as a Percentage of Income
In 2017, Nebraskans’ median household income was $59,970, just a few hundred dollars below the national average of $60,336. Good news, NE household income has been rising steadily for the last couple of years.
When it comes to disposable income, Cornhuskers spend a lower-than-average on car insurance. In 2014, the national average was 2.29 percent, Nebraska’s was only 1.81 percent.
Between 2012 – 2014 Nebraskan’s average car insurance premiums as a percentage of income were:
- 2012: 1.86 percent
- 2013: 1.88 percent
- 2014: 1.81 percent
To calculate what percentage of income your insurance premium might be, check out this handy calculator.
Compared to more populous states, the State of Nebraska requires much less car insurance. But, it’s important to keep in mind expert recommendations: the better insured you are, the better prepared you will be in case of an accident, whether you’re at fault or not.
This next table shows the 2015 average costs for the most popular types of coverage, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC):
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With those costs in mind, next, we’ll take a look at important statistics concerning insurance companies.
First on the list: loss ratio.
So what is a loss ratio, and why does it matter?
You may hold just the state-mandated liability insurance or much stronger coverage to help you avoid financial hardship, or even bankruptcy should damage bills stack up.
Either way, you want to be sure your insurer is going to pay when the time comes, especially in case of an accident with an uninsured motorist. Good news, though, Nebraska is one of the states with the lowest uninsured driver rates at 6.8 percent.
Loss ratio is a useful number to let you know how much the company spends on claims in comparison to how much money they receive in premiums.
For example, a company spending $750 in claims for every $1,000 they receive in premiums, will have a loss ratio of 75 percent.
A loss ratio above 100 percent means an insurer is losing money — on the other end, abnormally low loss ratios mean a company isn’t paying claims.
In 2017, the national average for loss ratios was 73 percent, according to The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). We recommend looking for companies with insurance loss ratios between 60 and 70 percent. Still confused? Check out this video:
So how do Nebraskan insurers do? Here are the loss ratios between 2012 – 2014:
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Luckily, Cornhuskers do quite well, meaning in case of a claim, you’re likely to get what you deserve in terms of financial compensation.
Add-ons, Endorsements, and Riders
There are a variety of add-on coverages available to ensure you’re fully protected on the road. Here are some of the most popular:
- Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP)
- Personal Umbrella Policy (PUP)
- Rental Reimbursement
- Emergency Roadside Assistance
- Mechanical Breakdown Insurance
- Non-Owner Car Insurance
- Modified Car Insurance Coverage
- Classic Car Insurance
To add on any of these coverages, speak with your agent. They’ll help set you up with coverage for all your unique needs and go over any associated costs.
Once you’ve decided, your agent will apply the necessary coverages to your policy.
Male vs. Female Rates
In this next section will go over what factors determine your premiums. First up, gender and age.
Unfortunately (for some demographics), Nebraska is not one of the states currently outlawing gender discrimination when it comes to your providers deciding insurance premiums.
In the Cornhusker state, though, age and marital status play a much larger role in determining car insurance premiums. In this table, we compare average rates by age, gender, and carrier.
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If you’re older and married (and have a family member in the military), USAA is the top choice for you. American Family Mutual offers the lowest rates for younger, single drivers.
Cheapest Rates by ZIP Code
In Nebraska, as with the rest of the country, your ZIP code also plays a role in rates. 68111, a neighborhood just north of the core of downtown Omaha, the state’s biggest city holds the crown for the most expensive ZIP code.
This table shows Nebraska’s average rates by ZIP code.
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Feel free to input your ZIP code into the table and see where your area lands.
Cheapest Rates by City
Nebraska is largely rural. Omaha and Lincoln are the only locales with populations higher than 60,000 residents, and this is reflected in their insurance premiums. They both sit atop the list of most expensive car insurance rates in NE.
As we’ve mentioned, where you live plays a huge role in determining your car insurance premium. The table below lists rates according to policyholders’ city.
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Again, feel free to enter your city into the search bar and check out how it compares to the rest of your fellow Cornhuskers.
Enter your ZIP code below to compare car insurance company rates.
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Best Nebraska Car Insurance Companies
So how do you choose which car insurer in the Cornhusker State is best for you? That depends on several factors, including what coverages are most important to you, your demographics, driving history, and where you live.
Some companies fit specific types of drivers best, but it all depends on insurance needs. The Nebraska Department of Insurance, which exists to protect the state’s insurance consumers, is another excellent resource to consult during your search.
In these sections, we’ll present the most important information to consider while shopping for Nebraska auto insurance.
The Largest Companies Financial Rating
AM Best is one of the top credit rating agencies in the country. Each year, they evaluate insurance companies and give grades based on financial stability. This table shows the ten largest insurance companies in Nebraska (in terms of direct premiums written) and their AM Best rating.
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Great news, each company is above an A, in some cases well above.
Companies with Best Ratings
J.D. Power completes national customer service rankings of insurers. Nebraska sits in the Central Region. Here are the 2019 rankings:
Shelter and Auto-Owners Insurance are bost beloved by their customers, ranked “among the best” by this index.
However, knowing a company’s customer service satisfaction and financial rating is just part of the picture. What about the companies to avoid? Next, we’ll go over the companies with the most complaints.
Companies with Most Complaints in Nebraska
This next table below provides a complaint index of the largest Nebraska auto insurers, with data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
Companies with a complaint index higher than one are worse than the average insurer, and those with an index below one are better than average.
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With so many more customers, a large company will have more complaints than a small company due to the sheer volume of business. That’s why some of the companies with the most written complaints still have a pretty good complaint ratio.
If you want to file a complaint against your insurance company in the state of Nebraska, use this form.
Commute Rates by Companies
Compared to the rest of the U.S., Nebraskans have the fifth-shortest average commute. It’s only 18 minutes each way, versus the American average of 26.1 minutes.
Though commute time isn’t a major factor in determining car insurance premiums for Nebraskans, with some companies, a longer daily driving time does increase rates.
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As you can see, only a couple of companies charge more depending on commutes such as USAA, State Farm, and Geico.
Next, we’ll help you see how much greater coverage really costs.
Coverage Level Rates by Companies
Most drivers assume more coverage means drastically higher rates. But, you might be surprised at how little a price different it is with the right insurer. Of course, it can be hard to figure out what you really need in terms of coverage. Here’s a guide to help:
If you need a lot of coverage above just liability, American Family Insurance offers some of the cheapest car insurance providers for you in Nebraska.
The table below shows the top 10 insurance providers in Nebraska average rates for low, medium, and high coverage levels.
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Before you decide to go with the cheapest option, remember: the better insured you are, the better prepared you are in case of an accident.
Credit History Rates by Companies
Your credit history affects auto insurance rates, too. It’s one of the major factors insurance companies look at when determining your monthly premium.
Nebraskans have one of the top 10 best average credit scores across the United States, with an average Vantage credit score of 695.
Even if you have a poor credit history, there are several options to find reasonable rates still. Both State Farm and Progressive provide the lowest premiums for those with poor credit.
Whether you have good, fair, or poor credit, here’s some information on which provider may offer you the best rates in the Cornhusker State:
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Companies take your driving history even more seriously than credit history.
Driving Record Rates by Companies
Everyone makes mistakes, and unfortunately, many of these are while we are behind the wheel.
Whether you’ve had a speeding ticket, an accident, or a DUI—your insurance is drastically affected by your past on the roads of Nebraska.
The table below compares how Nebraska’s top insurers take a first offense for speeding tickets, an accident, or a DUI into determining your insurance premium.
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If you’ve been convicted of a DUI, American Family Insurance generally offers the cheapest car insurance policies. A speeding ticket on your record? Nationwide will probably be your best bet.
Want to clean up your record? Check out this video:
Largest Car Insurance Companies in Nebraska
Often, there’s a reason why one company gains so much popularity in a particular state—good service. The table below shows the top 10 auto insurers in Nebraska by their direct premiums written, market share, and loss ratio.
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State farm leads by a huge margin, Progressive (the next largest company in NE) holds almost less than half as much market share.
Number of Insurers by Nebraska
When people hear “foreign” or “domestic,” they often think of distant countries. However, things are a little different in the insurance world.
When it comes to car insurance, domestic means an in-state provider, and foreign companies are based out-of-state but offer Nebraskan’s coverage.
According to the NAIC, Nebraska has 34 domestic car insurance companies and 867 foreign car insurance providers.
Knowing the laws where you’re driving is vital to staying safe and keeping your insurance rates low. But, we understand navigating each state’s unique laws can be confusing and time-consuming.
The National Motorists Association offers an excellent overview of Nebraska’s driving laws if you want to read further, but we’ll cover all the important info below.
Car Insurance Laws
As we mentioned above, Nebraska requires drivers to carry the following minimum liability car insurance coverage:
- Minimum bodily injury liability $25,000/$50,000
- Minimum property damage liability $25,000
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury $25,000/$50,000
Remember, these are minimums. Depending on your credit history, driving record, and typical commute, a more comprehensive policy might best suit you and your family.
How Nebraska Laws for Insurance are Determined
Where do NE insurance laws come from?
Each state is a little bit different. In Nebraska, laws are made by the nation’s only unicameral (single body) state legislature.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) sets standards across the U.S. It is a regulatory support organization created and governed by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories.
They offer this excellent guide to understanding how laws are passed.
In Nebraska, windshield coverage for minimum liability policies isn’t required. However, some insurance companies may offer coverage and/or a zero-dollar deductible.
Depending on your driving habits, it’s worth investigating if windshield coverage is a smart add-on to your policy.
Windshield glass damage is one of the most commonly filed auto insurance claims nationwide.
Drivers who have committed violations or have multiple infractions, as well as uninsured drivers and others, may need to file an SR-22 form.
Also, if your license has been suspended or revoked, you may need to file an SR-22 to have it reinstated.
The SR-22 form is available from your insurance company, but it is not an insurance policy.
Filing the correct documentation and meeting other requirements per the DMV can help you toward eventually reinstating your driving privileges.
Make sure the address on your driver’s license is correct to ensure that you receive any notices.
In Nebraska the following offenses may lead to your license receiving points or being suspended:
- Driving with an expired license: One point.
- Speeding 11 to 15 mph over the posted limit on a highway: Two speeding ticket points.
- Negligent driving: Three points.
- Driving in a careless manner: Four careless driving points.
- Operating a vehicle in a reckless manner: Five reckless driving points in NE.
- First driving under the influence (DUI) offense: Six DUI points.
- Point Suspension — When you accumulate 12 or more points against your license in a two-year period, your license will be revoked for a six-month duration.
- Driving Under the Influence — If breath, blood, or urine tests reveal you are driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or if you are convicted of DUI.
- Collision with Bicyclist or Pedestrian — If you cause a collision with a person riding a bicycle or a pedestrian.
You can also end up with a canceled license for an incorrectly or fraudulently applying for a license. It may also be canceled if a check written to pay driver license fees is returned for insufficient funds.
Currently, Nebraska does not offer any state-funded low-cost insurance policies.
Your best means of finding the cheapest rates are to shop around, look for discounts and deals, and carefully pick and choose what coverages suit you best.
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Automobile Insurance Fraud in Nebraska
Insurance fraud is the second-largest economic crime in America.
While it may seem like only providers suffer from the costs of insurance fraud, this crime directly impacts premium rates. The state department’s insurance fraud prevention division plays a crucial role in investigating suspected fraud.
If fraud numbers continue to rise, insurance companies will pass some of that cost into consumers’ premiums to make up the difference.
There are two classifications of fraud: hard and soft.
- Hard Fraud – A purposefully fabricated claim or accident
- Soft Fraud – A misrepresentation of information to the insurance company
Soft fraud is more common than hard fraud. Twenty to 40 percent of consumers admitted to lying to their insurer about one of the following:
- Number of annual miles driven
- Number of drivers in the household
- How the vehicle would be used
Insurance fraud is a felony in Nebraska. First violation: Fine of up to $5,000. Second violation: Fine of up to $10,000. Each subsequent violation: Fine of up to $15,000.
Even a “little, white lie” you tell to get a lower rate can lead to harmful consequences and is a crime. The willful misrepresentation of facts is known as “rate evasion” and is $16 billion annual expense to auto insurers.
In conjunction with the Attorney General’s Office, Nebraska employs an Insurance Fraud Prevention Division to investigate fraudulent activity in the Cornhusker state.
Statute of Limitations
The amount of time you have to file a claim or bring a lawsuit to court after an accident is known as the statute of limitations.
Statutes vary state-to-state. Under Nebraska Revised Statute 25-207, drivers have four years to file either personal injury or property damage lawsuits following a car accident.
However, for accidents involving death, personal injury, or property damage exceeding $500—drivers must report to the Department of Transportation in Lincoln within ten days.
Nebraska Specific Laws
Each state has its own unique set of laws. In Nebraska, for instance, drivers charged with a DUI or DWI have the right to a trial by a jury of their peers.
Also, no texting on Nebraska roads, no matter your age.
Check out The National Motorists Association’s list of Nebraska-specific driving laws.
Vehicle Licensing Laws
Nebraska requires drivers to have a valid driver’s license before operating a vehicle.
According to the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles, the following applies to Nebraska drivers:
- Any Nebraska resident who operates a motor vehicle on the streets and highways of Nebraska must have a license.
- Any new resident with a valid license from another state must obtain a Nebraska license within 30 days.
Again, Nebraska has a zero-tolerance policy for driving without proof of insurance.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security explains that Nebraska IDs are compliant with the federal REAL ID system. With a Nebraska license, you’re good to enter a federal facility, like the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Plant, just north of Omaha or board a domestic flight.
REAL ID laws can affect your travel, so it’s good to know NE drivers’ licenses pass the regulated standards.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance
The Nebraska DMV has an online portal where you can renew your registration and drivers’ license, update or change your address, and retrieve your driving history.
If you’re looking for info on vehicle registration and/or insurance, it can be easily accessed through the state database.
The penalty for driving without insurance in Nebraska is as follows: License and registration suspension will be suspended; you will be assessed a reinstatement fee of $50 for each; proof of insurance mandates will remain on your record for three years.
Teen Driver Laws
Nebraska has one of the youngest age requirements for gaining a school learner’s permit—14 years old.
If a teen lives in a qualified rural area, more than one and one-half miles from school, they may apply for a special school-only permit (LPE).
Once the adolescent motorist turns 14 years and gained experience driving under a school learner’s permit for at least two months, they can apply for a school permit (SCP).
With a school permit, teen drivers may drive unsupervised to and from school. He or she may also drive immediate family members (residing in the same household) to and from their respective schools.
When accompanied by a licensed driver age 21 or older, the SCP entitles the driver to operate a vehicle anywhere.
Another thing to note: hands-on experience behind the wheel supervised by an adult is mandatory.
Applicants must complete a driver safety course or 50 hours (10 of which must be nighttime) of parent instruction.
Once a teen driver in Nebraska turns 16 and has driven with a permit for at least six months without accumulating three or more points on his or her driving record, they can acquire a provisional license.
With a provisional license, teens are allowed to drive alone; however, between midnight and 6 a.m, they must be accompanied by a parent or licensed adult age 21 or older when driving.
When driving between home, work, and school, exceptions apply, they’re also limited to no more than one passenger under age 19 for the first six months.
After they have driven with a provisional license for 12 months or reaches the age of 18 without accumulating three or more points on his or her driving record, a teen in Nebraska may apply for a full license.
Drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using a cell phone or any other wireless device while driving. Nebraska has a universal texting ban for all drivers.
Older Driver License Renewal Procedures
In Nebraska, older drivers don’t differ much in their renewal procedures from the general population.
There are a couple of key differences, however, when it comes to the method of renewal and proof of vision. The table below details the unique regulations they must follow.
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If you’ve just moved to Nebraska, welcome! You may have a few questions on how and when to apply for a new license. The Nebraska DMV states that new residents to Nebraska will be required to provide:
- Proof of U.S. Citizenship or Lawful Status, containing Name and Date of Birth, and Identity.
- Principal Address in Nebraska (at least two documents are required).
- Applicants must disclose their valid social security number, which can be verified through the Social Security Administration or show proof of exemption from the requirement by presenting a valid, unexpired Record of Arrival and Departure in a valid foreign passport (I-94 or I-94A).
Bring all the required documentation to a driver’s licensing location, and obtaining your new Nebraska license should be a breeze.
License Renewal Procedures
Nebraskan’s drivers’ licenses are required to be renewed every five years. Renewals may be completed online, in person, or by mail. Don’t wait until your license expires.
Thirty days before the expiration of their current operator’s license, commercial driver’s license or state identification card, the State Department of Motor Vehicles sends renewal notice postcards to applicants.
Before their 21st birthday, however, individuals may apply for renewal 60 days before they turn of age. But, the license will not be valid until 10 days prior to a 21st birthday. Individuals 21 and over may renew 90 days before their birthday.
Rules of the Road
Knowing Nebraska’s road rules keeps you safe and keeps your driving record clean, meaning cheaper insurance. In these next sections, we’ll cover what you need to know about Nebraska’s transportation laws.
Fault vs. No-Fault
Nebraska is a traditional fault state, meaning whichever driver is found responsible for the car accident is responsible for all ensuing costs, including vehicle damage, injuries, lost income, etc.
Seat belt and car seat laws
According to the Nebraska Department of Transportation, “The driver, each front-seat occupant in the vehicle and all children six years of age and less than 18 years of age must wear occupant protection systems and all occupant protection systems worn [must be] properly adjusted and fastened.”
From January 1, 2019, onward, the Nebraska Child Safety Restraint Law requires:
- All children up to age eight must ride correctly secured in a federally approved child safety seat.
- Children ride rear-facing until up to age two or until they reach the upper weight or height limit allowed by the car seat’s manufacturer.
- Children under age eight must ride in the back seat, as long as there is a back seat equipped with a seatbelt and is not already occupied by other children under eight years of age.
- Children ages eight to 18 must ride secured in a safety belt or child safety seat (booster seat).
- Childcare providers must transport all children securely in an appropriate, federally approved child safety seat or safety belt.
- Children up to age 18 are prohibited from riding in cargo areas.
Receiving a violation means a $25 fine plus court costs and one point added to your driving record. To avoid losing your license, and pricey insurance premiums, it’s essential not to let those points add up.
Keep Right and Move Over Laws
In general, Nebraska drivers should stay in the right lane when driving slower than the speed of traffic. However, Nebraska Revised Statute 60-6,134 establishes three exceptions for when it’s okay to pass on the right:
- The vehicle to be overtaken is making or about to make a left turn;
- Upon a two-way street or highway with an unobstructed roadway, not occupied by parked cars, of sufficient width for two or more lanes of moving vehicles going in the same direction when the passing vehicle is traveling in one of such lanes; or
- Upon a one-way street, or upon any roadway on which traffic is restricted to one direction of movement when the roadway is free from obstructions and of sufficient width for two or more lanes of moving vehicles.
Unless you want a fine of $100 and up to seven days in jail, drivers should always pull over for emergency vehicles even if parked on any multi-lane road.
Nebraska enforces absolute speed limits. If you drive even one mph over the posted speed limit, you’re in danger of a ticket. The maximum posted speed limits for both cars and trucks are:
- 75 mph on rural interstates
- 70 mph on urban interstates
- 70 mph on limited-access roads
- 65 mph on all other roads
Of course, speed limits will differ depending on where you are. Please follow all locally posted speed limits, and slow down to stay safe and keep your car insurance affordable.
When it comes to rideshare driving, insurance can seem tricky.
But, if you drive for one of the major rideshare services like Uber and Lyft, its pretty simple. You are mandated to carry personal car insurance policies that align or exceed the minimum coverages dictated by state law.
Automation on the Road
Nebraska allows two types of autonomous vehicles: automated-driving-system-equipped vehicles and driverless-capable vehicles.
The law mandates any automated vehicles must achieve “a minimal risk condition” in the event of a failure.
Driving automation involves using cameras, radar, and other sensors to gather information about the vehicle’s surroundings, which is then interpreted by computer programs to keep the car safely driving.
The future may be nearer than it seems.
Safe driving is always necessary, the National Safety Council Nebraska reminds us all that “most car crashes are the result of human error. The best way to reduce the risk of being involved in a collision is to know and practice safe driving techniques.”
Now that you know all about the legalities of insuring and registering your Nebraska vehicle, here’s the important information about keeping safe on the roads of NE.
Nebraska’s Blood-Alcohol Content (BAC) limit is 0.08 percent; the High BAC limit is 0.15 percent. The first three instances of a DUI within 15 years are classified as misdemeanors. A fourth DUI within that same time frame is a Class IIIA felony, and each successive DUI is a Class III felony.
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Unlike most of the rest of the US, drivers charged with a DUI in Nebraska have the right to a trial by a jury of their peers.
Marijuana-Impaired Driving Laws
To date, Nebraska has not enacted a marijuana-impaired driving law.
Distracted Driving Laws
Nebraska is pretty lenient when it comes to distracted driving in terms of handheld devices, and there is no handheld band.
However, when it comes to texting, there is a state-wide ban for everyone. Anyone under 18 is subject to a full cell phone ban. Still, both these laws are secondarily enforced, meaning drivers must be pulled over first for something else — such as speeding or failure to yield — to receive a distracted driving citation.
Even with secondary enforcement, the state’s Department of Health and Human Services explains the hefty fines and points these violations cause to your driving record: “A driver who violates the texting law can be fined $200 for first offense, $300 second offense, or $500 for subsequent offenses in addition to three points against the driver’s license.”
That would certainly raise your auto insurance premiums. Avoiding texting while driving is both safe, and smart.
Driving Safely in Nebraska
With the rules of the road under our belt’s, let’s get to driving stats.
Vehicle Theft in Nebraska
The FBI reported just over 4,000 vehicle thefts in Nebraska in 2016 — and 3,125 of these were in the city of Omaha alone. Good news for rural residents, but still a good idea to always lock your vehicle once you park it.
Pickups are the vehicle most susceptible to theft, especially Chevrolets. The table below shows the top 10 models stolen in NE.
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If you’re worried about coverage in the event of a theft, be sure to check what your car insurance covers.
Road Fatalities in Nebraska
Nebraska, a state of wide rural stretches and mostly insured drivers, has relatively few road fatalities, statistically. However, it’s important to know the types of road fatalities Nebraskans face to be best prepared.
This next set of data shows the types and locations of road fatalities across Nebraska in 2017.
Most fatal highway in Nebraska
Not surprisingly, with more traffic, come more fatalities. The stretch of Interstate 80 traversing the Cornhusker state is Nebraska’s most deadly highway.
Fatal Crashes by Weather Condition and Light Condition
Crash rates are often affected by weather and light conditions. Snow or sleet on Interstate 80 outside Omaha, for instance, often leads to more crashes than normal.
The table below provides a breakdown of fatal crashes by weather and light conditions across Nebraska in 2017.
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Though most crashes happen in the day (when most people are driving), the percentage of crashes to drivers is higher at night when visibility is compromised.
Fatalities (All Crashes) by County
Over the last five years, road fatalities in most Nebraska counties held relatively steady. This table shows the five-year trend in traffic fatalities for Nebraska’s counties.
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Douglas County, one of the state’s largest, has the highest number of fatalities. If you want to see where your county sits, search in the table above.
In 2018, 230 people died in Nebraska traffic fatalities, a slight increase compared to the previous five-year trends. However, compared to national averages, Nebraskans tend to be safe on the road.
Even though there is less traffic, more Nebraskans die in rural versus urban traffic fatalities. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), of the 228 traffic deaths in Nebraska in 2017, 159 were rural, and 69 were urban. Everything from roadway departures and twisting rural roads can affect this increase in fatal crashes.
Fatalities by Person Type
The table below breaks down 2017 Nebraska vehicle fatalities by person type. Breaking down where the victim was at the time of a crash, either occupant of an enclosed vehicle, a motorcyclist or a nonoccupant.
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Fatalities by Crash Type
The table below breaks down 2017 Nebraska vehicle fatalities by crash type.
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130 single occupant, 126 roadway departure, be careful, especially when driving alone.
Five-Year Trend For The Top 10 Counties
Road fatalities in most Nebraska counties are holding steady over the last five years. The table below shows the five-year trend in traffic fatalities for Nebraska’s biggest counties.
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As we mentioned, Douglas County sees the most fatalities. It is also one of the most populous counties in the state.
Fatalities Involving Speeding & Alcohol-Impaired Driving
Douglas (home of Omaha) and Lancaster (home of Lincoln) lead the state when it comes to speeding fatalities. But overall, Nebraska’s speeding fatality rate is quite low. According to the Department of Transportation, only 17 deaths in 2017 were the result of speeding.
In Nebraska, more deaths result from drunk driving than speeding. The table below breaks down fatalities in crashes involving speeding and an alcohol-impaired driver for Nebraska’s three biggest counties in 2013 and 2017.
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Teen Drinking and Driving
Though Nebraska tends to have stellar driving stats, unfortunately, the state ranks second for teen drunk driving arrests. The table below illustrates the truth about teens and drunk driving in Nebraska.
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Thankfully, for worried parents and fellow drivers alike, agencies across the state are joining together to reduce the number of Nebraska’s teens drinking and driving.
EMS Response Time
The EMS response time in Nebraska is largely dependent on the crash happening in a rural or urban area.
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The table above shows the average EMS response time for urban and rural areas, from time of the crash to EMS notification to how long it takes to arrive at the hospital.
Transportation in Nebraska
If you are a Nebraska driver, chances are you reside in a household with 1-3 cars. You also most likely drive alone to work, and spend anywhere from 5-24 minutes commuting, well below the national average.
There are more cars than drivers in the Great State of Nebraska! There are 2,503,163 registered vehicles in the state, and only 1,450,479 licensed drivers. Talk about car lovers!
As we mentioned, Nebraskans have relatively short commutes: only 18 minutes each way compared to the national average of 26.1 minutes.
Outside of Omaha and Lincoln, commuter transportation is not much of an option given the rural nature of the rest of Nebraska.
Traffic congestion in Nebraska’s two biggest cities — Omaha and Lincoln — is a worsening problem. Otherwise, though, drivers in the state face very little congestion.
Mostly, drivers will find themselves on wide-open roads in the great state of Nebraska.
And now you are ready to be legally (and affordably) insured no matter what stretch of roadway you call home in the Cornhusker State. What part of this guide to Nebraskan car insurance did you find most helpful?
More importantly, are you ready to find quotes and get out on the road?
If you’re ready to get started comparing rates, click below to begin saving.