Residents of Arkansas were advised this week that driving riding mowers and powered wheelchairs on public roads is likely illegal, according to an opinion from Attorney General Dustin McDaniel.
McDaniel said that riding lawn mowers are considered special mobile equipment and "should be operated on public roads only incidentally while performing the task that they were designed to perform."
Riding mowers are considered exempt from motor vehicle registration requirements, likely due to the fact that the equipment is not designed for transporting people over the public roads, McDaniel said.
Because the law generally requires motor vehicles to be registered before being driven on the highway, but does not require registration of riding mowers, power wheelchairs, golf carts and scooters, "one could reasonably conclude that the General Assembly has chosen not to permit these types of vehicles to be driven on public roads," the opinion said.
The opinion, which also covered motor scooters and golf carts, is not legally binding but expresses the attorney general's opinion based on law. It was issued at the request of a state legislator.