ORV Laws- Lake County
STATE OF MICHIGAN COUNTY OF LAKE ORV ORDINANCE No. 24 An ordinance authorizing and regulating the operation of Off Road Vehicles (ORVs) on roads in Lake County, providing penalties for the violation thereof, and for the distribution of public funds resulting from those penalties pursuant to 2008 PA 240, which is incorporated by reference in its entirety. THE COUNTY OF LAKE ORDAINS: Section 1. Definitions. As used in this ordinance, the following definitions shall apply: a) "County" means the County of Lake. b) "Driver's license" means an operator's or chauffeur's license or permit issued to an individual by the Secretary of State under chapter III of the Michigan Vehicle Code, 1949 PA 300, as amended, MCL 257.301 to 257.329, for that individual to operate a vehicle, whether or not conditions are attached to the license or permit. c) "Operate" means to ride in or on, and be in actual physical control of, the operation of an ORV. d) "Operator" means a person who operates or is in actual physical control of the operation of an ORV. e) "ORV" means a motor driven off road recreation vehicle capable of cross country travel without benefit of a road or trail, on or immediately over land, snow, ice, marsh, swampland, or other natural terrain. ORV includes, but is not limited to, a multitrack or multiwheel drive vehicle, an ATV, a golf cart, a motorcycle or related 2-wheel, 3-wheel, or 4-wheel vehicle, an amphibious machine, a ground effect air cushion vehicle, or other means of transportation deriving from a source other than muscle or wind. ORV does not include a registered snowmobile, a farm vehicle being used for farming, a vehicle used for military, fire, emergency, or law enforcement purposes, a vehicle owned by a utility company or an oil or gas company when performing maintenance on its facilities or on property over which it has an easement, a construction or logging vehicle used in the performance of its common function, or a registered aircraft. f) "Road" means a county primary road or county local road as described in section 5 of 1951 PA 51. MCL 247.655. g) "Road Commission" means the Board of County Road Commissioners for the County of Lake. h) "Safety certificate" means a certificate issued pursuant to 1994 PA 451, as amended, MCL 324.81129, or a comparable ORV safety certificate issued under the authority of another state or a province of Canada. i) "Direct supervision" means the direct visual observation of the operator with the unaided or normally corrected eye, where the observer is able to come to the immediate aid of the operator. J) “Maintained Portion of the Road” means the portion of the road improved, designated, or ordinarily used for vehicular traffic and does not include within its meaning the shoulder or rightof-way. Section 2. Designated Roads. a) An ORV may be operated only on the far right on the maintained portion of a road on the designated county roads listed in Appendix A, incorporated by reference, and only prior to December 1 and after March 31 of each year. b) An ORV may not be operated on the road surface, roadway, shoulder or right-of-way of any State or Federal highway, including but not limited to M- 37, US 10, or any other State or Federal highway in Lake County. Section 3. Operating Conditions. Except as set forth herein or otherwise provided by law, an ORV meeting all of the following conditions may be operated on a designated road in the county: a) At a speed of no more than 25 miles per hour, or a lower posted ORV speed limit. b) By a person not less than 12 years of age. c) With the flow of traffic. d) In a manner which does not interfere with traffic on the road. e) Traveling single file, except when overtaking and passing another ORV. f) While displaying a lighted headlight and lighted taillight at all hours. g) Each operator and passenger must wear a crash helmet and protective eyewear approved by the United States Department of Transportation unless the vehicle is equipped with a windshield and a roof or roll bar that meets or exceeds standards for a crash helmet and the operator and each passenger is wearing a properly adjusted and fastened safety belt. h) Unless equipped with a braking system that may be operated by hand or foot, capable of producing deceleration at 14 feet per second on level ground at a speed of 20 miles per hour; a brake light, brighter than the taillight, visible when the brake is activated to the rear of the vehicle when the vehicle is operated during the hours of 1/2 hour after sunset and 1/2 hour before sunrise; and a throttle so designed that when the pressure used to advance the throttle is removed, the engine speed will immediately and automatically return to idle. i) While the ORV is equipped with a spark arrester type United States forest service approved muffler, in good working order and in constant operation. j) Pursuant to noise emission standards defined by law. k) The ORV shall be licensed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, and the ORV license/sticker shall be permanently attached and visibly displayed in the manner prescribed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources in accordance with State law. Section 4. License: Safety Certificate. A person less than 18 years of age shall not operate an ORV on a road in the County unless the person is in possession of a valid driver's license, or unless the person is under the direct supervision of a parent or guardian and has in his or her possession an ORV safety certificate or a comparable ORV Safety Certificate issued under the authority of another state or a province of Canada. Section 5. Registered Motor Vehicle. Unless a person possesses a valid driver's license, a person shall not operate an ORV on a road in the County if the ORV is registered as a motor vehicle, and either is more than 60 inches wide or has three wheels. Section 6. Evidence. In a court action in this state, if competent evidence demonstrates that a vehicle that is permitted to operate on a road pursuant to state law was in a collision with an ORV required to be operated on the far right of the maintained portion of the road pursuant to this ordinance, the operator of the ORV shall be considered prima facie negligent. Section 7. Penalties. Any person who violates this ordinance is guilty of a municipal civil infraction, and shall pay a civil fine of not less than $175.00 and not more than $500.00. In addition, a court may order the person to pay full restitution for any damage to the environment, a road, or public property damaged as a result of the violation.