Are ATVs Street Legal In Canada (Laws, Regulations + More)

Are ATVs Street Legal In Canada

Have you ever wondered if ATVs are street legal in Canada? Well, look no more, as we have you covered with all of the details.

If you are planning to visit Canada in the summer and enjoy its nature while riding on an ATV or some other OHV, it is important that you understand the rules and regulations that govern their use.

So, are ATVs Street legal in Canada? In Canada, ATVs and other OHVs are not regulated by national laws, and can be said that they are banned from all roads except where they are explicitly allowed. Regulations exist on the level of provinces and municipalities, and you should inform yourself about the local regulations.

With that being said, let’s get into more details of the matter.

Are ATVs street legal in Canada?

Street legal vehicles in Canada are only those that laws explicitly allow being on the streets, roads, and highways. As there is no national law allowing ATVs on Canadian roads, regulation on lower administrative levels applies.

And it is different among both provinces and various municipalities. But certain things are common for all of them.

For an ATV to be street legal it must be properly registered and insured by a private liability policy with $500,000 or more coverage, and the rider must have a driver’s license and helmet, and be 16 years or older.

When it comes to riding on private properties, the above requirements usually can be avoided, and most of the time, the only limit is that riders 12 years old or younger must be supervised by an adult.

Are ATVs Street legal in Alberta?

In Alberta, ATVs are not allowed on any street or road that is under provincial jurisdiction. But if registered, insured, and have a driver’s license, you can ride it in many ATV designated areas of public parks.

For all other roads, municipal bylaws are something you should inform yourself about.

In some municipalities, ATVs are allowed to use all streets and roads, though lower speed limits are imposed on them. While in some, they are banned.

In private lands, which include private streets and roads, use is unregulated and depends on the owner’s permission. But in the whole of Alberta, helmets are not compulsory.

Read also: Are ATVs Street Legal in Alberta? (Laws To Know!)

Are ATVs Street legal in British Columbia?

In BC, you need to have an ATV registered and insured to be used on both private and public lands. While on all public lands, you must also wear a helmet.

ATVs are not allowed on the majority of public roads and streets but in towns close to designated off-roading trails, often there is legislation in place which allows them also on public streets.

Are ATVs Street legal in Manitoba?

In Manitoba, ATVs and all OHVs are completely banned from all driveways, gravel roads, highways, and residential streets.

But, if your ATV is registered and insured, and you have a driver’s license, helmet, and goggles; you can ride it in the ditches along many highways.

On private lands, there are no restrictions on ATV use, besides the wishes of the owners. And there are many public areas and trails designated for ATVs and other off-road vehicles.

Are ATVs Street legal in New Brunswick?

In NB, ATVs are allowed only on the public roads with QuadNB designation, and on those only for ATVs that are clearly marked as being registered to members of a QuadNB club.

But such a limit applies only to provincial roads and streets. Roads and streets that are maintained by local municipalities can be designated as allowed for ATVs.

While streets are a no-go, there are many off-road trails where ATVs are allowed, if they are insured, registered, and operated by a rider with a driver’s license and mandatory helmet.

Are ATVs Street legal in Newfoundland?

In NL there is a blanket ban on ATVs from all public roads. Also, persons under 16 years of age are not allowed to operate ATVs with engines larger than 90cc.

But, local municipalities have the right to designate specific roads and public areas where ATVs are allowed, including the streets and other public roads.

Outside these areas, ATVs are allowed access on highways only for purpose of crossing them. And Newfoundland defines “highway” as any road outside of residential areas.

Are ATVs Street legal in Nova Scotia?

In Vova Scotia, ATVs are not allowed on any provincial roads. On other public roads, they are allowed only if they are inside the designated areas, for which you will also have to purchase a C$75 ($59) use permit.

To operate on private lands you do not need a permit, but the ATV must be registered and insured.

Are ATVs Street legal in Ontario?

Ontario is another province where ATVs are not explicitly allowed on public roads, but instead municipal bylaws allow them on streets in some towns if they are properly registered and insured.

On municipal roads numbered from 500 to 899, it is allowed to drive on the shoulder. But, the speed limit for ATVs is 20km/h (12.4mph) in areas where the posted speed limit is 50km/h (31mph) or lover, and 50km/h (31mph) in areas with a higher posted speed limit.

The use of helmets is compulsory on public roads and off-road trails.

Are ATVs Street legal in Prince Edward Island?

To be able to drive an ATV on public roads in Prince Edward Island, you must have a driver’s license for two or more years or pass an OHV Safety Training Course.

While ATVs are not allowed outside the designated trails and private properties, they can be driven in ditches along the highways.

Are ATVs Street legal in Quebec?

In Quebec, it is illegal to operate an ATV on both public and private lands owned by municipalities if you are younger than 16.

Furthermore, ATVs are only allowed to cross public roads, and not to be driven on them, and that only if you have a valid trail license. Which is also needed to ride an ATV on trails maintained by various off-road clubs.

Are ATVs Street legal in Saskatchewan?

ATVs can be operated on public roads in Saskatchewan only if you are 16 or older, have a valid driver’s license, and the vehicle is registered and insured.

And you can do it only on roads that are specifically allowed by local bylaws, to cross highways, and also on bridges that are not explicitly banned for ATVs by local bylaws.

ATVs can be operated on private lands without these limits, but in both cases, riders must wear helmets and goggles.


In Canada, there are no national laws that allow ATVs on public streets and roads. Their legality is primarily determined by municipality bylaws, and they can be operated only on roads and lands that are explicitly allowed.

Most commonly, for an ATV to be street legal in Canada it must be registered and insured with a private liability policy, and the rider must have a valid driver’s license and helmet.

In some provinces, goggles are also compulsory.

ATVs are generally unregulated for the use of private lands unless those lands are owned by local municipalities.

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Jeff is an automotive technician, technical writer, and Managing Editor. He has held a lifelong passion for cars, with a particular interest in cars like the Buick Reatta. Jeff has been creating written and video content about transportation, automotive, electric cars, future vehicles as well as new, used for more than 18 years. Jeff is based in Boulder, Colorado.

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