Illinois City Is ‘Sick And Tired’ Of ATVs, Makes Major Law Changes
One city in Illinois has had it with ATVs in their area. It's not that they're done with dealing with all of them, it's more of what has been described as "nuisance ATVs."
What is an "ATV" according to Illinois law?
Any motorized off-highway device 50 inches or less in width, having a manufacturer’s dry weight of 900 lbs. or less, traveling on three or more low pressure tires, designed with a seat or sadly for operator use, and handle-bars or steering wheel for control.
ATVs have been a building problem in Rockford, Illinois if you were to ask residents who have had encounters. Even I had a questionable run-in with two 4-wheelers over the summer. While driving along S. Main Street on the west side of town there were two ATVs swerving in and out lanes which felt odd because I was the only nearby vehicle.
At one point one of them was pointing at me and even tapped my rear bumper with their tires. Not knowing what their plan was and feeling in danger, I blew the stop light and sped off to a nearby gas station where a police car was parked.
It's likely instances like this led to multiple complaints such that Rockford city officials (including the mayor) felt like it was time to make some changes and to get it done as quickly as possible.
The changes are being made to ensure the safety of rides and drivers on the roads. The ordinance is also being updated for clarification purposes for both residents and law enforcement officers.
Beginning September 1, 2022, here are the ATV-related ordinances that will go into effect.
- Non-highway vehicles are declared nuisances and reinforced that they are illegal on public streets.
- All ATVs in Rockford must be registered. (There is no cost.)
- If the registered owner of the ATV relocates, changes contact information, or sells the vehicle, the registration must be updated accordingly.
- Officers will legally have the right to impound these vehicles from public and private properties.
- Fueling non-highway vehicles or allowing them to be fueled at a gas station is prohibited unless secured on a trailer or truck bed.
You can read Rockford's mayor's statement here.