Laws & Regulations

All recreation vehicle operators in Massachusetts who are under the age of 18 are REQUIRED to complete an approved OHV Safety Course, and carry the Massachusetts OHV Safety Certificate with them while riding on public lands.

Other age restrictions in Massachusetts

All operators under the age of 18 must successfully complete an approved recreation vehicle safety and responsibility course. There is one mandatory session that a parent or guardian of an operator under the age of 16 must attend.

In addition to the required OHV education and training requirements, all riders who are under 16 and a half cannot operate a recreational vehicle across a public way unless directly supervised by an adult.

Anyone under the age of 14 cannot operate an all terrain vehicle.

All persons age 14 to 16 cannot operate an all–terrain vehicle with an engine capacity greater than 90 cubic centimetres. When they are operating an all terrain vehicle 90cc or under they must be directly supervised by an adult.

OHV Safety Gear Requirements

The Massachusetts Environmental Police Boat and Recreational Vehicle Safety Bureau strongly encourages ALL recreation vehicle operators to wear a proper helmet, eye protection, gloves and over-the-ankle boots when riding any off-road vehicle. A helmet is the single most important piece of safety equipment you can have, and wearing one while riding can save your life!

According to the Massachusetts OHV Laws and Regulations, ALL recreation vehicle operators and those being towed are REQUIRED to wear an approved, securely fastened helmet at all times. Additionally, ALL OHV’s must be equipped with one or more headlights, a red rear light and a red rear reflector.

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Ride Safe and Legal!

Before heading out on Massachusetts' OHV and OHV trails, please remember the following tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable ride:

  • Always wear appropriate safety gear when riding.
  • Ensure your OHV is properly registered in the state.
  • Always stay on designated trails. Stay off paved roads.
  • Obtain the landowner's permission before going onto private land.
  • Know before you go – contact the landowner or land management agency to find out about open OHV trails or routes.
  • Never, ever ride a recreation vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Important Note

The laws and regulations on this page are meant as a quick reference for recreation vehicle operators. It is your responsibility to know ALL OHV laws before heading out on the trails. For a complete list of OHV laws and regulations in Massachusetts, please consult with the Massachusetts Environmental Police Boat and Recreational Vehicle Safety Bureau at