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  • PART I ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
  • TITLE XIV PUBLIC WAYS AND WORKS
  • CHAPTER 90B MOTORBOATS, OTHER VESSELS AND RECREATIONAL VEHICLES
  • Section 26 Prohibited or limited operation by underage persons; restrictions

Section 26. (a)(1) No person under 14 years of age shall operate an all terrain vehicle or recreation utility vehicle. This section shall not apply to a person operating a recreation vehicle or snow vehicle in preparation for, or while a participant in, a sanctioned race, rally or organized event which is supervised by a person aged 18 or older and which has been authorized or approved by a municipal permitting authority. It shall be an affirmative defense in a delinquency proceeding for a violation of this section that a juvenile was supervised by a person aged 18 or older while operating such a vehicle within 21 days before such sanctioned race, rally or organized event or while a participant in such a sanctioned race, rally or organized event.

(2) No person between 14 and 16 years of age shall operate an all-terrain vehicle or recreation utility vehicle with an engine capacity greater than 90 cubic centimeters; provided, however, that a person between 14 and 16 years of age may operate an all-terrain vehicle or recreation utility vehicle with an engine capacity equal to or less than 90 cubic centimeters if directly supervised by a person 18 years of age or older.

(b) No person aged 18 years of age or older shall knowingly permit another, who is under the age of 18, to operate a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle in his custody or under his control in violation of this chapter. Lack of ownership of the vehicle or mistake as to the age of the operator shall not be available defenses to a violation of this section.

(c) No person operating or in control of a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle shall refuse to stop such vehicle after having been requested or signaled to do so by a law enforcement officer. No such person shall refuse to give his correct name, address and registration number to such officer.

(d) No person shall operate or ride in or on a snow vehicle or a recreation vehicle or ride in or on a sled, inflated tube or similar article attached to such vehicle and which is pulled by such vehicle, without wearing protective headgear. Such headgear shall conform to minimum standards for construction and performance as the registrar of motor vehicles may prescribe.

(e) No person shall operate a snow vehicle or a recreation vehicle on privately-owned property unless: (i) the operator is the owner or lessee or an immediate family member of the owner or lessee of the property; (ii) the operator has in his possession either a document, signed by the owner or lessee of such property or his agent, authorizing the operation of a such vehicle on the property by the operator or valid proof of current membership in a club, association or other organization to which express authorization for the operation of such vehicles on the property has been granted; provided, however, that such operation shall be consistent with the express authorization granted and any restrictions imposed therewith; or (iii) the owner or lessee of the property has designated the area for use by such vehicles by posting reasonable notice of such designation in a manner approved by the director.

No person shall operate a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle on publicly-owned property except on trails marked and designated for use by such vehicles, or without the express permission of the owner.

(f) No person shall operate a snow vehicle or a recreation vehicle in a manner that harasses or otherwise harms deer or other wildlife. No person shall operate a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle in a reforested or planted area in a manner that causes damage to growing stock. No person shall operate a snow vehicle or a recreation vehicle in a manner that causes damage to public or private property including, but not limited to, lands owned or managed by the department of conservation and recreation or the division of fisheries and wildlife, wetlands or other waters of the commonwealth, priority habitats delineated as such by the division of fisheries and wildlife pursuant to chapter 131A, lands used for public water supply purposes or historic or archaeological sites.

(g) No person shall carry a firearm, rifle or shotgun in or on a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle or on a trailer or sled attached thereto unless such firearm, rifle or shotgun is unloaded and in an enclosed case. This section shall not apply to a law enforcement officer or other person with enforcement powers authorized in section 32, or to a paraplegic as provided in section 65 of chapter 131.

(h) No person shall operate a snow vehicle or recreation vehicle after the registration has been suspended or revoked.