If you’ve done any reading or research when it comes to good UTV trails and excursions, chances are you’ve discovered the endless amount of terrain available to those who live in the United States. From coast to coast you can find hundreds of excellent trails that boast a variety of terrain, difficulty levels, views, and climates. With all that variety out there, why not take advantage of it? Whether you’re able to travel any distance or circumstances require you to stay a little closer to home, there is plenty to enjoy for everyone. But one thing to consider before heading out on a UTV adventure is how to stay safe and out of trouble no matter where your adventure may take you. Because UTVs and ATVs are not part of the federal highway safety regulations, they will vary state by state. Keep reading for UTV laws by state. This is not a comprehensive list, so be sure to check state-specific laws before your next trip.
If you’re planning a trip to Arizona with children or teenagers, be aware that riders under the age of 18 must wear an appropriate helmet on public lands.
Arkansas hosts a variety of UTV trails, but the state laws there state that children under the age of 12 cannot operate a OHV unless they are supervised by an adult.
However, in California children 14-years-old and under must have adult supervision before hitting the trails. The child or adult must have a safety certificate. Riders between 15 and 18-years-old must also have a safety certificate or be with an adult that has one. Regardless of age, all riders must wear a helmet.
If you have younger children, you may want to consider a trip to Colorado where the minimum age is quite low. Their laws state the children under 10 years old cannot drive a UTV unless they are with an adult that has a driver’s license.
Conversely, if you have young children Florida might not be the best destination. To ride unsupervised, drivers must be 16-years-old and all riders have a safety certificate. And both helmet and eye protection are required for passengers under 16 years of age.
In Maine, those as young as 10 years of age can operate a OHV, but must be at least 16 to do so without supervision or have a safety certificate. In fact, anyone between the ages of 10 and 15 must have a safety certificate. And you’ll be required to wear a helmet if you are under 18.
In New Mexico, children as young as six years old can drive an UTV but have to be at least 10 years old to do so without supervision. Those under 18 need a safety certificate, helmet, and cannot carry passengers.
In most areas, riders must be 16 to drive unsupervised with the exception of a few public lands that allow 12-year-olds to drive. Age shows no bounds when it comes to helmets and eye protection; they are required for all riders. You will also need an operator’s license while in Ohio.
In Utah, riders can be as young as eight years old with supervision, and 16 without. Or they will need a safety certificate. You’ll need a safety certificate unless you have a driver’s license, and everyone under 18 needs a helmet.
Those under 18 years of age must wear a helmet when out on their OHV.