PennDOT Offers All-Terrain Vehicle Safety Tips
PennDOT reminds riders that operating all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) on roadways not designated for their use is illegal in Pennsylvania, and advised ATV riders to use caution while riding.
According to Chapter 77 of the state Vehicle Code, it is unlawful to operate a snowmobile or an ATV on any street or highway that is not designated and posted as a snowmobile or an ATV road by the governmental agency with jurisdiction over the roadway. Also, without the safety features required on motor vehicles, ATV riders put themselves and other motorists at risk when they travel on traffic routes.
An ATV may make a direct crossing of a street or two-lane highway if:
The crossing is made at an angle of approximately 90 degrees to the direction of the highway and at a place where no obstruction prevents a quick and safe crossing;
The ATV is brought to a complete stop before crossing the highway;
The operator yields the right-of-way to all oncoming traffic that constitutes an immediate hazard; and
The crossing of a divided highway is made at an intersection of that highway with another street or highway.
ATVs may also be operated on streets or highways during periods of emergency, if declared by the jurisdiction, or when necessary to cross a bridge or culvert.
According to PennDOT data, from 2007 to 2011 there were 94 crashes and 11 fatalities involving an ATV in PennDOT’s District 9, covering Bedford, Blair, Cambria, Fulton, Huntingdon and Somerset counties. Statewide, there were 1,265 crashes and 96 fatalities involving ATVs in that time period.