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Maine celebrates winter snows with the opening of snowmobiling trails during the trail totaling more than 14,000 miles.

The trails are maintained and groomed by the members that are over 250 snowmobiling clubs throughout the state.

The Interconnecting Trail System offers 2,500 miles of main arterial snow trails, and the other state’s trails are winding through 10 million acres of private land with the permission of landowners for public use.

Knowing the Maine Snowmobile Laws, on both public and private property is essential.

The fine can be up to $1,000 for each violation.

Safety, Common sense, and courtesy are the foundation of snowmobiling regulations in Maine. If you understand the Maine snowmobile law, snowmobile safety, and also respect other people’s rights, your snowmobile trail will be full of fun, rather than problems.

Below is a brief discussion of Maine snowmobile law as presented in the Maine snowmobile lawbook.

What is Snowmobile?

“Snowmobile” is simply a vehicle driven by mechanical power to travel over snow or ice and is supported in Part by belts, skis, or cleats.

New snowmobile laws

The previous year, there were several fatalities and snowmobile accidents in Maine trails. Alcohol and Speed alcohol were significant causes of these accidents.

  • Ride right: This year there have been some new laws that prohibit a snowmobile operator from riding left of center on a trail when navigating or approaching a grade, curve, hill, or corner. The wardens will ticket you if you are caught riding on the left in these situations. Initially, they place lane dividers in the trail and ticket those were not able to maintain their lane because of too high a speed.
  • Drunk driving: The new law has banned snowmobile drivers from getting drunk, before riding the snowmobile.
  • Helmets required: A helmet is required to be worn by the snowmobile operator and his passenger.

Snowmobile registration

There are several ways to Register Snowmobiles.

It can be registered through the internet, mail, or in person at over 200 locations throughout Maine, the location does not exclude the Department’s main office located at 284 State Street in Augusta.

Mail applications for snowmobile registrations to Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Division of Licensing and Registration, 41 State House Station, 284 State Street, Augusta, Maine 04333-0041; Telephone: (207) 287-8000.

To acquire For the list of locations where the snowmobile may be registered, call 207-287-8000 which is the Department’s Information.

For online registration, you will use the MasterCard or VISA card. 

The fees for registering are as follows:

  • Non-residents:   

Season registration for $68

10-consecutive day registration for $58

3-consecutive day registration for $43

  • Residents:   

Season registration for $33 which start from (July 1-June 30)

Rule violations; snowmobiles and snowmobile races

The following penalties apply to violations of snowmobiles law or the protection and safety of spectators at snowmobile races.

  • Civil: A person who violates the snowmobiles rule or the safety and protection of spectators at snowmobile races has committed a civil violation and will be fined a minimum of $100, but the maximum amount fined for civil violation is $500, according to section 10650.
  • Criminal: A person who violates the snowmobiles rule or the safety and protection of spectators at snowmobile races after been judged, and also commit 3 or more civil violations under this Part within a period of 5-year has committed a Class E crime.
  • Speed: In Maine trials, there are no speed limits. Sledders are judged by the standard of “prudent speed and reasonable for the existing conditions.” Reasonable is noting that there are other families out there riding with you, enjoying the outdoors. Try to Slow down when you meet other sledders when you come to a bridge, curve, or rise in the trail. If you can’t control your sled enough to keep it to the right-hand side of the trail, then stop prudently and safely.
  • Reckless operation: It is illegal to operate a snowmobile in a way that endangers another person or property.

Operation of snowmobile

  • No permission is given. This chapter does not grant permission or license to go or cross on the property of another.
  • Stop and identify requirements. When a Persons are operating a snowmobile on another one land, he has to stop and identify himself upon the request of the landowner’s or the landowner duly authorized representative.
  • Snowmobile Operation on the controlled-access highway. A person doesn’t have to operate a snowmobile within the right-of-way limits of a controlled-access highway or upon a controlled-access highway.

A person may operate a snowmobile on the controlled-access highway or within the right-of-way limits of a controlled-access highway by the following.

  1. A person on a registered snowmobile may cross controlled-access highways by use of roads crossing controlled-access highways at grade or by use of bridges over or roads under those highways.
  2. The Transportation Commissioner can issue different permits for designated crossings of controlled-access highways.
  3. An Operator operating a registered snowmobile may operate it within the right of- way limits of a controlled-access highway on a trail segment approved by the board of directors of the Maine Turnpike Authority or the Transportation Commissioner, as applicable.

The safety & protection of spectators at snowmobile races

The safety of spectators during snowmobile racing is paramount; a license is attained from the Warden Service, Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, before the start of a snowmobile race.

Safety standards are obtained from the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

Tips to safe snowmobiling

  • Travel in groups and inform your parent or a responsible person about your plans.
  • Know your snowmobile and its capabilities.
  • Respect the property and rights of others.
  • If it is necessary on ice, do so with extra caution.
  • When crossing a highway, check properly if the road is clear and cross as directly as possible.
  • Know and obey Maine snowmobile rules and regulations.
  • Do not harass wildlife with your snowmobile, or in areas frequented by game.

Conclusion 

Everyone under the age of 18 or who wants to be sure of his safety should wear a helmet while riding or operating on a snowmobile on a trail funded under the Snowmobile Trail Grant program.

Children, less than ten years of age, are not permitted to operate a snowmobile on land other than that owned by their guardian or parent unless an adult accompanies them.