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It's the Law!: Indiana Laws for ORVs

Operating on Highways and Roads

  • An ORV may be ridden on the public right-of-way adjacent to a public highway, except a limited access highway, when there is sufficient width to do so without endangering life or property.
  • You may cross a public highway, other than a limited access highway, at a 90-degree angle to get from one area to another. To do so, you must:
    • Bring your vehicle to a complete stop before crossing and...
    • Yield to all traffic.
  • Cities, towns, and counties have individual laws pertaining to ORVs. Check these before riding.
  • An ORV may be operated on a road or highway for a special event after obtaining a permit.

Operating on Public Property

  • An ORV may not be ridden on public property without the consent of the state or an agency of the state.
  • An ORV may not be ridden in a U.S. forest without the consent of the U.S. Forest Service.

Understanding Operator Requirements

  • Persons under 14 years of age may operate an ORV only if:
    • They are supervised by a person who is at least 18 years of age or...
    • They are operating on property owned or controlled by the person’s parent or guardian.
  • A person may not operate an ORV on a public highway without a valid motor vehicle driver’s license.

Meeting ORV Safety Equipment Regulations

  • An ORV may not be operated between sunset and sunrise without at least one headlight and one taillight.
  • An ORV may not be operated at any time unless it has brakes capable of slowing the ORV at a rate of 14 feet per second when operating on level ground at an initial speed of 20 miles per hour.

Operating Your ORV Legally

An individual may not operate an ORV under any of these conditions:

  • While under the influence of alcohol, a narcotic, or other drug
  • At a rate of speed greater than is reasonable or in a manner that endangers a person or property
  • At a speed exceeding five miles per hour on ice covering public waters when within 100 feet of an individual on foot or within 100 feet of a fishing shanty
  • Within 100 feet of a dwelling between midnight and 6 a.m., except on your own property or as a guest on another person’s property
  • Within 100 feet of a slide, ski, or skating area
  • Without a lighted headlight and taillight when operating between one-half hour after sunset and one-half hour before sunrise
  • Without a muffler in good working condition
  • In a forest nursery, planting area, or public land where growing plants or animals may be damaged
  • On any property without the consent of the landowner or tenant
  • On a railroad track or its right-of-way
  • In or on a flowing river, stream, or creek, except for the purpose of crossing by the shortest possible route
  • On or across a cemetery or burial ground
  • When carrying a bow with an arrow nocked
  • While transporting a firearm on or in the ORV unless the firearm is:
    • Unloaded and ...
    • Securely encased or equipped with and made inoperative by a manufactured keylocked trigger-housing mechanism
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Online offroad vehicle safety handbook last modified: April 20, 2010
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