I took a little road trip recently, nothing long distance, just a jaunt across southern Minnesota.

And then I saw it, right up ahead there on Highway 60 heading east. It was an older Chevy, tooling along about 60 MPH or so and it was missing a rear bumper.

Hmm, I thought to myself, I wonder if that's legal, driving on the highway (or gravel road, for that matter) without a bumper?

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Now, the ol' bumper may not be essential for driving, but it can be pretty important if you get into a fender bender or worse. Protection, that is what it is, keeping you safe. But is it legally necessary? Well, yes. And apparently, no.

It all depends on where you're driving.

You see, it varies state-to-state. Now, that fella that was driving ahead of me there in Minnesota, turns out he was illegal. Yep, in Minnesota you have to have both front and rear bumpers on that car or you could get pulled over.  So what happens if he was tooling the highways in Iowa? Same thing. In Iowa, you too have to have that front and rear bumper.

But if you happen to cross over into South Dakota, hey! Don't worry about it. South Dakota doesn't have a law requiring that bumper. So put the cruise on (if it has it) and keep on moving.

There are other states with no specific 'bumper law' (including Nebraska) and you can check it out state-by-state here. But just a suggestion: Regardless of where you happen to meander, try to have them bumpers attached.

Ya just never know when you might need them.

First Quarter Finance Contributed To This Article

9 Driving Laws in South Dakota that Might Surprise You, Some You Didn't Know Existed

There are some things you can do on South Dakota roads that you may have once thought illegal but aren't.

While perusing the South Dakota Department of Public Safety I was reminded of some things that come up in conversation quite often.

Like, can you ride in the back of a pickup? Here's the answer along with eight other surprising South Dakota driving laws:


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