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Iowa ATV Law


Each ATV used on public land, public ice, or a designated riding trail of this state shall be currently registered. An all-terrain vehicle registered in another state must also be issued a user permit in this state.
Iowa Code Ann. § 321I.3

ATVs may not be operated on a highway unless used for agricultural purposes between the hours of sunrise and sunset, for the purpose of surveying by a licensed engineer or land surveyor, or where designated. A person operating an all-terrain vehicle on a highway shall have a valid driver's license and the vehicle shall be operated at speeds of thirty-five miles per hour or less. An all-terrain vehicle that is owned by the owner of land adjacent to a highway, other than an interstate road, may be operated by the owner of the all-terrain vehicle, or by a member of the owner's family, on the portion of the highway right-of-way that is between the shoulder of the roadway, or at least five feet from the edge of the roadway, and the owner's property line. A person operating an all-terrain vehicle within the highway right-of-way under this subsection must comply with the registration, safety, and age requirements.
Iowa Code Ann. § 321.234A

ATV must have suitable and effective muffling device.
Iowa Code Ann. § 321I.12

Every ATV operated during the hours of darkness must display a lighted headlight and taillight. Every ATV must be equipped with brakes.
Iowa Code Ann. § 321I.13

A person may not operate an ATV:

  • at a rate of speed greater than reasonable or proper under all existing circumstances, in a careless, reckless, or negligent manner so as to endanger the person or property of another or to cause injury or damage, or while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or narcotics or habit-forming drugs.
  • on any public land, public ice, or designated riding trail, in violation of official signs of the commission prohibiting such operation.
  • in any park, wildlife area, preserve, refuge, game management area, or any portion of a meandered stream, or any portion of the bed of a nonmeandered stream which has been identified as a navigable stream or river by rule adopted by the department and which is covered by water, except on designated riding areas and designated riding trails. This paragraph does not prohibit the use of ford crossings of public roads or any other ford crossing when used for agricultural purposes; the operation of construction vehicles engaged in lawful construction, repair, or maintenance in a streambed; or the operation of all-terrain vehicles on ice.
  • on an operating railroad right-of-way unless to cross at an established crossing.
  • with more persons on the vehicle than it was designed to carry

Iowa Code Ann. § 321I.14

A person under 12 years of age may not operate an ATV unless the person is taking a prescribed education training course and the operation is under the direct supervision of a certified all-terrain vehicle education instructor, or the operation is under the direct supervision of a responsible parent or guardian of at least eighteen years of age who is experienced in ATV operation and who possesses a valid driver's license.
Iowa Code Ann. § 321I.21

Need more information on state laws? Learn more about the laws where you live.

Note: Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia. This information is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia, although if you are injured in an accident, we have relationships with other personal injury attorneys and lawyers throughout the United States.

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