Motorcycle Laws in Arizona | Phillips Law Group
November 10, 2017
Motorcycles are popular vehicles that offer operators and riders freedom and mobility, and it’s important to know the motorcycle laws in Arizona if you’re looking to take to the open road on one of these vehicles.
Sadly, there were a total of 2,594 motorcycle accidents in Arizona in 2021, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT)’s Crash Facts data. It will take more drivers knowing the motorcycle laws in Arizona and respecting each other to potentially lower that number.
Like other states, Arizona has a series of laws that are designed to protect motorcycle operators and passengers from the dangers of traveling on this type of vehicle.
Our Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyers are dedicated to protecting the rights of motorcycle accident victims. Our attorneys are knowledgeable about Arizona’s motorcycle laws and can discuss them with you during a free confidential consultation if you were injured in an accident.
Requirements for Obtaining a Motorcycle Endorsement
To get a valid license to operate a motorcycle in Arizona, you must meet the following criteria:
- Be at least 16 years old
- Have a learner’s permit for at least six months if under 18 years old
- Complete a motorcycle driver safety program that the Motor Vehicle Division Approves or submit a certified form from a parent or guardian that states that the applicant has at least 30 hours of driving practice
Like other license requirements in Arizona, a person who wants to acquire a class M endorsement must pass a written test, medical screening, and vision screening.
A class M license is required to legally operate a motorcycle in Arizona. Licensed drivers can also receive a class M endorsement on their current license.
Arizona Helmet Law
According to Arizona’s motorcycle helmet law Arizona Revised Statute § 28-964, all motorcycle riders and passengers under the age of 18 are required to wear a helmet.
There are two types of helmets motorcyclists can choose from: three-quarter and full face. However, you must ensure the helmet is designed to meet U.S. Department of Transportation and state standards or contain a label from the Snell Memorial Foundation.
The helmet should also fit snugly and all the way around the motorcyclist’s head. Additionally, the helmet should have no obvious defects, such as cracks, loose padding, or frayed straps.
Other Safety Equipment
Additionally, motorcycle operators are required by Arizona law to wear protective glasses, goggles, or a transparent face shield or to have a protective windshield installed on the motorcycle.
The motorcycle should also be equipped with a rearview mirror, a seat, headlamps, and footrests. If a passenger rides on the motorcycle, there must also be a seat and footrests for the passenger.
Motorcycle Passenger Law
Arizona law requires the installation of certain motorcycle parts if a passenger is riding on the motorcycle, including a seat and footrests for the passenger.
If a passenger is under 18 years old, he or she is required to wear a helmet. While the motorcyclist has a permit, he or she cannot bring passengers on the bike.
Arizona’s lane-sharing law consists of the following rules:
- Motorcyclists are entitled to full use of a lane, and except when lane filtering, the operator of a motorcycle shall not overtake and pass in the same lane occupied by the vehicle being overtaken
- A motorcyclist shall not drive between traffic lanes or between adjacent rows of vehicles (lane splitting), except when lane filtering
- Motorcyclists shall not ride more than two vehicles side-by-side in a single lane
Under a new law that went into effect on September 24, 2022, motorcycle drivers in Arizona are allowed to participate in lane filtering. Lane filtering allows motorcycles to ride slowly between lanes when traffic is stopped.
However, there are some stipulations. According to Arizona Revised Statute § 28-903, the motorcycle operator must do the following:
- 1. Operate the motorcycle on a street that both:
- Is divided into at least two adjacent traffic lanes in the same direction of travel
- Has a speed limit that does not exceed forty-five miles per hour
- 2. Travels at a speed that does not exceed fifteen miles per hour.
To read more about lane filtering, see the text for Senate Bill 1273.
In Arizona, the maximum noise level for motorcycle mufflers is determined by the model of the motorcycle, measured 50 feet from the center of a lane of the road.
Arizona law requires the original manufacturer’s muffler to be installed on a motorcycle. Noise reduction parts must be installed if the original muffler is no longer installed. Arizona also prohibits the use of cutoff or bypass devices.
Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for Help
Because of the lack of protection, individuals injured in a motorcycle accident often suffer serious injuries like traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, or multiple fractures.
If you believe your motorcycle accident was caused by a negligent driver, it is important to contact an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer for assistance.
For nearly 30 years, our personal injury lawyers have helped accident victims pursue claims for compensation for their injuries. We are knowledgeable about the state’s motorcycle laws and fight diligently to secure compensation for our clients.
We can discuss your claim during a free, no-obligation consultation. We work on a contingency fee, which means you only pay us if you recover your claim. We can handle communications with the insurance company, investigate the circumstance surrounding your accident, and focus on the legal aspect of your claim while you concentrate on your recovery.
Call 1-800-706-3000 for help with your claim.
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