ATV Safety Training
Frequently asked questions:
- Why do I need ATV safety training?
- When and where are ATV safety training courses offered?
- How much will the ATV safety training course cost if I do not qualify for free training?
- What curriculum is covered in the ATV safety training course?
- Do I have to bring my own ATV?
- What are the guidelines for age and size appropriate ATVs?
California Vehicle Code §38503 states no person under age 18 shall operate an ATV on public lands unless satisfying one of the following conditions:
- They are taking a prescribed safety training course under the direct supervision of a certified all-terrain vehicle safety instructor.
- They are in possession of an appropriate ATV safety certificate issued by this state or issued under the authority of another state.
- They are under the direct supervision of a parent or guardian, or an adult authorized by the parent or guardian, who is in possession of an appropriate ATV safety certificate issued by this state or issued under the authority of another state.
- In addition, riders under the age of 14 must either possess an ATV safety certificate or the adult supervising the rider must possess an ATV safety certificate. NOTE: No matter who possesses the ATV safety certificate, all riders age 14 and under must be supervised by an adult.
- Riders age 14-17 may ride without adult supervision, but must possess an ATV safety certificate.
- ATV safety training courses are offered at all SVRAs and various sites throughout California. Below is a list of the SVRA training sites:
- Courses are predominately scheduled on weekends. Contact ATV Safety Institute for available dates and locations.
Training is free in most cases. Money from the OHMVR Trust Fund have been dedicated through a contract with Specialty Vehicle Institute of America (SVIA) and the ATV Safety Institute (ASI) to assist in developing safe riding habits and proper trail etiquette.
Students practice safe riding techniques with hands-on exercises:
- Starting and stopping
- Turning (both gradual and quick)
- Negotiating hills
- Quick stops and swerving
- Riding over obstacles
- Pre-ride inspections
- Recommended protective gear (DOT approved helmets, gloves, over-ankle boots, goggles, long pants, long-sleeve shirts or jackets, etc.)
- Environmental concerns
- Local laws
NOTE: A person in possession of an appropriate safety certificate issued under the authority of another state satisfies the condition for operation of an ATV in California.
- In most cases you must bring your own age and size appropriate ATV.
- Loaner ATVs may be available at some training sites. You must contact ATV Safety Institute in advance to make arrangements for loaner ATVs.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued the following recommended guidelines for consumers to use when purchasing ATVs for youth:
Age 12 and older: 70cc - 90cc
Age 16 and older: Over 90cc
ALWAYS Follow the Manufacturer's Minimum Age Recommendation Warning Label on the ATV.
[Note: Click on each image to view a larger version of the label.]