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Cheap Car Insurance in Portsmouth, Virginia

Find cheap car insurance in Portsmouth, a port city in Virginia that is one of a handful of cities independent of a county. Directly across the river from Norfolk, another independent city, Portsmouth is part of what his known as the Hampton Roads metro area. It boasts miles of waterfront property on the Elizabeth River. A ferry service runs between Portsmouth and downtown Norfolk. An estimated 95,935 residents live in Portsmouth’s 47 square miles. Established in 1752, it was named for Portsmouth, England. Its Olde Towne Historic District boasts an impressive collection of historically significant homes.

Driving Conditions in Portsmouth

Particularly in the Downtown Tunnel on Interstate 264 that crosses the Elizabeth River to Norfolk, traffic congestion can become backed up during rush hours. I-264 and I-664 both form the Hampton Roads Beltway, which loops around the outside of Portsmouth, crosses the harbor and links communities in Hampton Roads. The Hampton Roads area has landed in various rankings among the worst for commuters, both in accidents and traffic gridlock. However, U.S. Census Bureau data shows the average commute time for Portsmouth is under 24 minutes, about two minutes shorter than the national average.

Current information on accidents, construction and weather-related delays is available by calling 511. Real-time traffic information also can be accessed and smartphone apps can be downloaded for Virginia 511 Web at

Unique Laws in Portsmouth

Pet owners who leave their canine friends tied up without being present are subject to a fine, the Portsmouth City Council decided in 2017. Residents are required by Portsmouth city ordinances to shovel their sidewalks within three hours of a snowfall stopping.

Smokers who light up in the car anywhere in Virginia can face fines if there is a passenger under 8 years old in the car, according to state laws. There’s also a fine for opening a car door when it’s “not reasonably safe” to do so, such as in the path of an oncoming vehicle or cyclist. Drivers may cross double yellow lines to pass a pedestrian or anyone “moved by human power,” such as a bicycle, skateboard or scooter, provided it is safe to do so.

Bicycles, mopeds and other non-motorized vehicles are now included in the list of vehicles for which a motorist can be cited for following too closely.

Portsmouth Crime Statistics

Data compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for 2016 states there were 758 violent crimes in Portsmouth, 14 of which were murder or manslaughter. The local violent crime rate of 791 offenses per 100,000 residents is nearly double the national average of 386 offenses per 100,000 people.

The property crime rate in Portsmouth the same year was 5,607 offenses per 100,000 residents, also above the U.S. average of 2,451 incidents per 100,000 residents. Within the city, 458 vehicles were stolen in 2016, FBI data shows, a rate of 478 incidents per 100,000 residents. The national average is 236 incidents per 100,000 people.

Portsmouth safety requirements

New drivers with permits may not use a cellphone or other wireless devices while driving, even if it is in hands-free mode, according to Virginia laws. An exception is to make an emergency call.

No matter where they are sitting in the vehicle, everyone under age 18 must wear a seat belt or ride in a child safety seat, according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, and everyone in the front seat must wear a seat belt regardless of age. Texting while driving is banned for all ages in Virginia.

Portsmouth impaired driving laws

According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, a driver who is over the age of 21 will receive a DUI charge if his or her blood alcohol level is higher than 0.08. Those who refuse a test receive an automatic seven-day license suspension. First offenders receive a fine of $250 and one-year license revocation. Punishment increases to include a five-day jail sentence for a BAC of .15 and 10 days for .20 or higher. Ignition interlocks may also be ordered, including for first offenders. No matter what your background or driving record, contact us for cheap auto insurance rates in Portsmouth, Virginia.

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When you are looking for cheap car insurance, ask if the insurance company offers a policy where they forgive the first accident.

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