As an Arkansas motorcycle rider, you must understand Arkansas’ unique motorcycle laws and regulations. Each state dictates its own laws for motorcyclists, and understanding the state’s laws can help you avoid a ticket and stay safe on the road.
Read on to learn the essential Arkansas motorcycle laws every motorcyclist should know.
Arkansas Helmet Laws
Some states require all riders to wear helmets, while others limit helmet use to specific age groups. In Arkansas, all riders under age 21 must wear a helmet. Anyone 21 and over can choose whether or not to wear one.
While helmets are not mandatory for all riders, we highly recommend wearing one every time you hop on your motorcycle. Your helmet could make the difference between suffering a traumatic brain injury during an accident and walking away unscathed.
Insurance Coverage Laws
If you want to operate a motorcycle in Arkansas, you must hold at least the minimum liability insurance coverage. Here are the minimum insurance requirements for motorcyclists in Arkansas:
- $25,000 bodily injury per person
- $50,000 bodily injury per accident
- $25,000 property damage per accident
These coverages can provide funds to the other driver if you are at fault for an accident. However, we recommend purchasing coverage beyond these minimums to protect yourself, your passengers, and your property in a motorcycle accident.
Arkansas Passenger Laws
Before you bring a passenger with you on your motorcycle, you should be sure to understand Arkansas’s passenger laws. You must have a designated seat on your bike for a passenger. Additionally, you cannot ride with a passenger under eight years old.
Further, motorcycle riders who are under 16 cannot carry passengers with them.
Motorcycle License Laws
Arkansas offers two types of motorcycle license endorsements: a Class MD endorsement and a Class M endorsement.
The Class MD endorsement is intended for riders between ages 14 and 15. This endorsement limits these young riders to motor-driven cycles and bicycles. However, riders who are 16 and older can apply for a Class M endorsement, which allows them to operate motorcycles on the road.
Arkansas follows a standard Class M licensing process. First, you’ll need to pass a vision test and a written exam to receive your motorcycle permit. Then, you can either take an on-bike skills test at the BMV or pass a certified motorcycle training course to obtain your motorcycle endorsement.
The Class M endorsement expires after eight years.
Lane Splitting Laws
Lane splitting is the practice of riding your motorcycle between lanes of slowed or stopped traffic. While Arkansas law does not explicitly mention lane splitting, you can assume this practice is not permitted in Arkansas.
Currently, the only state that explicitly permits lane splitting is California.
Safety Equipment Laws
Your motorcycle must contain certain safety equipment to be street legal in Arkansas. This equipment includes the following at a minimum:
- One headlight
- One brake light
- A rear reflector
- Rearview mirrors
While turn signals are not legally required in Arkansas, they are a good idea, as they can help you remain predictable on the roadway. However, if you choose to ride a bike without turn signals, you will need to use arm signals to indicate your turns instead.
Noise Restriction Laws
Your motorcycle must have a factory-made muffler or a similar muffler to keep noise and exhaust to a reasonable level. While the state does not have any specific laws about noise levels, local jurisdictions may have their own laws surrounding motorcycle noise restrictions.
Now that you know these Arkansas motorcycle laws, you can confidently ride your motorcycle throughout the state. However, if you ever become a motorcycle accident victim, contact our Law Tigers team at 1-888-863-7216 for assistance.