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The Arizona Game and Fish Department has a new Web page designed to inform off-highway vehicle (OHV) enthusiasts about new laws that will affect OHV use starting Jan. 1, 2009.
A Web link at www.azgfd.gov/ohv will take you to a list of answers to frequently asked questions about the new laws and the rules and regulations. Some of the provisions include:
- The requirement to purchase an annual “OHV Decal” for any OHV designed by the manufacturer primarily for off-highway use and weighing 1,800 pounds or less, in order to operate that OHV in Arizona. This generally includes all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), side-by-sides (utility vehicles), dirt bikes, and some sand rails. The OHV Decal can be purchased through the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) after Jan. 1. It is anticipated that MVD will announce the cost of the Decal soon.
- 4X4’s, trucks, sport utility vehicles (SUVs), cars, and other recreational vehicles (motor homes) are not required to purchase the OHV Decal.
- Travel is limited to roads, trails and areas that are designated open by the land management agency for motorized vehicle use.
- Travel by motorized vehicles that causes damage to wildlife habitat, riparian areas, cultural or natural resources, or property or improvements is prohibited.
- OHVs generating sound greater than 96 decibels must have a muffler or other noise dissipative device
- Anyone under the age of 18 will be required to wear a properly fitted and fastened USDOT approved helmet when riding any OHV.
The new laws were passed thanks in large part to a joint effort between Arizona sportsmen, conservation groups, off-highway vehicle (OHV) user groups, elected officials, and other members of the public. The goal of the new regulations is to provide better OHV management and protection of natural resources while maintaining access. For more information go to: www.azgfd.gov/ohv.