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Ask A Trooper: Do minors need to be in booster seats on ATV's?

Question: I recently purchased a 2018 Polaris Ranger. We have a 2-year old son and I am wondering what the laws are. Does he need to be in a car seat or booster seat with a helmet? Thank you in advance.

Answer: When riding on ATVs, OHVs and motorcycles, a passenger under age 18 must:

• Wear an approved helmet when riding on public lands or waters, or on a public road right-of-way.

An approved helmet must meet federal law, which requires the helmet to display the symbol "DOT." DOT is the manufacturer's certification that the helmet conforms to the applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards. Standard bicycle helmets and hockey helmets are not legal helmets.

The important thing to keep in mind is the size of a child's head and neck, and the weight of a legal helmet. The weight of the helmet may be too much for the child to safely support, especially when being bounced around on the trail. Again, bike or hockey helmets do not provide the level of protection necessary when traveling in a vehicle.

• Wear a seat belt if provided by the manufacturer when riding on public lands or waters, or on a public road right-of-way.

For more information, visit https://files.dnr.state.mn.us/rlp/regulations/ohv/ohv_regs.pdf

A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Office of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp. Jesse Grabow — Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501-2205. (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW or reach him at, jesse.grabow@state.mn.us).

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