New York State is a leader in snowmobile education and offers one operator training course for snowmobilers of all ages beginning at age 10. This course provides fundamental information which all snowmobilers should possess in order to ensure the safety of riders and other trail users. Successful completion of this course results in the award of a NYS Snowmobile Safety Certificate. Courses are taught by experienced snowmobilers who volunteer their time to make the sport safer and more enjoyable for everyone. They are usually sponsored by snowmobile clubs, agricultural extension offices, law enforcement agencies, or similar groups, and are available in fall and early winter. View a list of courses being offered throughout New York State. This list is updated on a weekly basis during the snowmobile season.
Anyone who is at least 18 years old may operate a snowmobile in New York State without any other qualification except as defined by state and local laws regulating that operation. However, it is recommended that all operators complete a recognized snowmobile safety course. See the section on Rider Training for more information on the New York State Snowmobile Safety Education Program.
Youth ages 14 through 17 years old may operate a snowmobile without adult or other supervision if they have completed a snowmobile safety training course recognized by the State of New York. Youth ages
10 through 13 may operate a snowmobile, on lands upon which snowmobiling is allowed, if they have completed a snowmobile safety training course recognized by the State of New York and are accompanied by (within 500 feet of) a person who is at least 18 years of age. The Commissioner of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation will issue a snowmobile safety certificate to those who successfully complete this course. Youths who do not hold this certificate are subject to the same restrictions as children under the age of 14 years. See the section on Rider Training for more information on the New York State Snowmobile Safety Education Program.
Children under 10 years old or under age 14 without a safety certificate may operate a snowmobile only on lands owned or leased by their parent or guardian.
A non-resident operator who is a resident of another state or country and is the holder of a valid snowmobile safety certificate issued by that state or country shall be considered the same as the holder of a New York State Safety Certificate.