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Florida’s Classification of Low-Speed and other Similar Motorized Vehicles

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Personal Injury

Whether you own or operate, a low-speed or other motorized vehicle, or were involved in an accident with one, knowing the vehicle’s classification is crucial. The following is offered by the ATV and Golf-cart Accident lawyers, of the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A., to provide information on Florida’s classification of low-speed and other similar motorized vehicles.

Florida statutes define specific vehicle types using a variety of factors such as weight, size, number of tires, and speed. The classification of a vehicle is important because this definition will allow you to determine the rules applicable to a particular vehicle’s use and operation. Some vehicles may fall under more than one category, such as an ATV or ROV that may also be considered a low-speed vehicle, or a golf-cart that may also be classified as a utility vehicle.

ATV (all-terrain vehicle): any motorized off-highway vehicle 50 inches or less in width, having a dry weight of 1,200 pounds or less, designed to travel on three or more nonhighway tires, having a seat designed to be straddled by the operator and handlebars for steering control, and intended for use by a single operator with no passenger. See, Fla. Stat. §316.2074(2); see also, Fla. Stat. §317.0003(1).

ROV (recreational off-highway vehicle): any motorized off-highway vehicle 50 inches or less in width, having a dry weight of 1,200 pounds or less, designed to travel on three or more nonhighway tires, having a seat designed to be straddled by the operator and handlebars for steering control, and intended for use by a single operator with no passenger. See, Fla. Stat §317.0003(9).

Two-Rider ATV: any ATV that is specifically designed by the manufacturer for a single operator and one passenger. See, Fla. Stat. §317.0003(10).

Low Speed Vehicle: any four-wheeled vehicle whose top speed is greater than 20 miles per hour but not greater than 25 miles per hour, including, but not limited to, neighborhood electric vehicles. Low-speed vehicles must comply with the safety standards in 49 C.F.R. s. 571.500 and s. §316.2122. See, Fla. Stat. §320.01(41).

Utility Vehicle: a motor vehicle designed and manufactured for general maintenance, security, and landscaping purposes, but the term does not include any vehicle designed or used primarily for the transportation of persons or property on a street or highway, or a golf cart, or an all-terrain vehicle as defined in s. §316.2074. See, Fla. Stat. §320.01(42).

Mini Truck: any four-wheeled, reduced-dimension truck that does not have a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration truck classification, with a top speed of 55 miles per hour, and which is equipped with headlamps, stop lamps, turn signal lamps, taillamps, reflex reflectors, parking brakes, rearview mirrors, windshields, and seat belts. See, Fla. Stat. §320.01(44).

Swamp Buggy: a motorized off-road vehicle that is designed or modified to travel over swampy or varied terrain and that may use large tires or tracks operated from an elevated platform. See, Fla. Stat. §320.01(45).

Depending on the type of vehicle, and the location that a vehicle is being used in, there may be both state and local laws that apply to the operation of a particular vehicle. For more information on specific laws associated with ATVs, Golf Carts, and Low-Speed Vehicles, please see our article on the ‘Use and Operation of Low-Speed and Other Similar Motorized Vehicles.’

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