Town of Inlet, NY
Hamilton County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Inlet 3-10-1998 by L.L. No. 1-1998. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Vehicles and traffic — See Ch. 150.
The purpose of this chapter is to protect the health, safety and welfare by regulating the operation of snowmobiles on Town of Inlet snowmobile trails and highways in the Town of Inlet so that all snowmobiles are operated in a manner which will be compatible with the use of such highways and public lands for vehicular and pedestrian travel and other uses and which will promote the safe and proper use of snowmobiles for recreation and commerce and minimize detrimental effects of such use on the environment.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
HIGHWAY
The entire width between the boundary or right-of-way lines of any way or place when any part thereof is open to the use of the public as a matter of right for the purposes of vehicle traffic, including all highways designated as seasonal limited use highways.
OPERATE
To ride in or on, other than as a passenger, or use or control the operation of a snowmobile in any manner, whether or not said snowmobile is underway.
OPERATOR
Every person who operates or is in actual physical control of a snowmobile.
OWNER
Any person having title to a snowmobile. If a snowmobile is sold under a contract of conditional sale, whereby the title remains in the vendor, such vendor or his assignee shall not, at the delivery of such snowmobile be deemed an owner within the provisions of this section, but the vendee or his assignee, upon the receipt of possession thereof, shall be deemed such owner not withstanding the terms of such contract, until the vendor or his assignee shall retake possession. A person holding only a security interest in a snowmobile shall not be deemed an owner unless such person also has possession of such snowmobile.
SNOWMOBILE
A self-propelled vehicle designed for travel on snow or ice, steered by skis or runners, supported in whole or in part by one or more skis, belts or cleats.
SNOWMOBILE TRAIL
Any trail, path, roadway, highway or street which is owned, leased, operated or maintained by the Town of Inlet and open to the public for snowmobiling purposes.
TOWN
The Town of Inlet.
It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate any snowmobile in the following unsafe or harassing ways on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway:
A. 
Imprudent speed. At a rate of speed greater than reasonable or proper under the surrounding circumstances and in no event greater than 20 miles per hour.
B. 
Reckless operation. In a careless, reckless or negligent manner so as to unreasonably endanger the person or property of another or to cause injury or damage thereto.
C. 
Intoxication and drugs. While in an intoxicated condition or under the influence of narcotics or drugs as defined by § 114-a of the Vehicle and Traffic Law of the State of New York.
D. 
Lights.
(1) 
Between sunset and sunrise or when lights are required for safety without displaying at lease one lighted head light and tail light.
(2) 
Operating other than as an emergency vehicle and displaying one or more lighted red or combination red or white lights which is revolving, rotating, flashing, oscillating or constantly moving light.
E. 
Plantings. In any tree nursery or planting in a manner which damages or destroys growing stock, or creates a substantial risk thereto.
F. 
On lands of another. On private property, without the consent of the owner or lessee thereof. Any person operating a snowmobile upon lands of another in violation of this section shall stop and identify himself upon the request of the landowner, his duly authorized representative or lessee, and if requested to do so by said landowner, representative or lessee shall promptly remove said snowmobile from the premises.
G. 
Snowmobiles towing a sleigh, sled or toboggan. The towing of a sleigh, sled or toboggan, unless attached by a rigid support, connection or towbar.
H. 
Failure to stop and yield. In any place at any time failing to stop and yield to an authorized ambulance, civil defense, or police snowmobile or police vehicle being operated as an emergency vehicle and approaching from any direction.
I. 
Failure and refusal to comply. In any place at any time failure or refusal to comply with any lawful order or direction of any police officer or other person duly empowered to enforce all laws of the state relating to snowmobiles.
Snowmobiles operating in the Town of Inlet shall under no circumstance exceed any posted speed limit when operating on a snowmobile trail or highway designated as open to snowmobiling. In addition, snowmobiles shall always operate at a speed which is reasonable and proper under existing circumstances. In no event shall a snowmobile be operated in excess of 20 miles per hour.
Each person operating a snowmobile on any Town snowmobile trail or highway shall observe all vehicular traffic signs and signals and all rules and regulations applicable to vehicular traffic, and shall obey the order and directions of any state, county or local police officer or any other law enforcement officer authorized to direct or regulate traffic.
No person shall operate a snowmobile within 100 feet of a dwelling between 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. at a speed greater than five miles per hour.
It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate a snowmobile on any highway or public land other than as follows:
A. 
Snowmobile trails. Snowmobiles may be operated on all snowmobile trails open to the public as so designated under the Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Law of the State of New York, and as designated by the Town Board of the Town of Inlet from time to time in a manner consistent with the provisions of this chapter and all other county or state laws relating to the operation of snowmobiles.
B. 
Emergencies. Snowmobiles may be operated for the purposes of emergency travel only on all highways in the Town of Inlet, during the period of time when and at locations where snow upon the highways renders travel by motor vehicles impractical as so declared and permitted by the Supervisor of the Town of Inlet, or when the specific travel for a specific purpose is authorized or directed by a peace or police officer or other duly recognized emergency personnel.
C. 
Highway crossings. Snowmobiles may be operated so as to take a direct crossing of a highway at any time of the day, provided that the crossing is made at an angle approximately 90° to the direction of the highway, at a place where no obstruction prevents a quick and safe crossing, the snowmobile is brought to a complete stop before crossing the main traveled way of the highway and the driver yields the right-of-way to all oncoming traffic.
D. 
Culverts and bridges. Snowmobiles may be operated on highways when necessary to cross bridges or a culvert for a distance not to exceed 200 yards.
E. 
Highways open for snowmobiling. A snowmobile may be operated on all those highways or sections of highways in the Town as designated by the Town Board of the Town of Inlet. Such designations will be posted in the Town Clerk's office and each highway will be conspicuously posted, indicating that it has been designated as a road on which snowmobiles may be operated.
F. 
Special events. Snowmobiles may be operated at special events in a manner consistent with this chapter, or in a manner as defined in the Parks, Recreation and Historic Prevention Law.
G. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to drive or operate a snowmobile on any plowed sidewalk in the Town of Inlet.
A. 
Operation of snowmobile prohibited.
(1) 
No person shall operate a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway while his ability to operate such snowmobile is impaired by the consumption of alcohol.
(2) 
No person shall operate a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway while he has .08 of 1% or more by weight of alcohol in his blood as shown by chemical analysis of his blood, breath, urine or saliva, made pursuant to the provisions of this section.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
(3) 
No person shall operate a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway while he is in an intoxicated condition.
(4) 
No person shall operate a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway while his ability to operate such snowmobile is impaired by the use of a drug as defined by § 114-a of the Vehicle and Traffic Law of the State of New York and § 3306 of the Public Health Law of the State of New York.
(5) 
No person shall operate a snowmobile while his ability to operate such snowmobile is impaired by the combined effects of the consumption of alcohol and the use of one or more drugs as defined by § 114-a of the Vehicle and Traffic Law of the State of New York and § 3306 of the Public Health Law of the State of New York.
B. 
A violation of Subsection A of this section shall be a misdemeanor and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine of not more than $500, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
C. 
A police officer may, without a warrant, arrest a person, in case of a violation of Subsection A of this section if such violation is coupled with an accident or collision in which such person is involved, which in fact has been committed, though not in the police officer's presence, when he has reasonable cause to believe that the violation was committed by such person.
D. 
Every person operating a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway which has been involved in an accident or which is operated in violation of any of the provisions of this section shall, at the request of a police officer, submit to a breath test to be administered by the police officer. If such test indicates that such operator has consumed alcohol, the police officer may require such operator to submit to a chemical test in the manner set forth in Subsection F of this section.
E. 
Any person who operates a snowmobile on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway shall be deemed to have given his consent to a chemical test of his breath, blood, urine or saliva for the purpose of determining the alcoholic or drug content of his blood, provided that such test is administered at the direction of a police officer:
(1) 
Having reasonable grounds to believe such person to have been operating a snowmobile in violation of this section and within two hours after such person has been placed under arrest for any such violation; or
(2) 
Within two hours after a breath test, as provided in this section, indicates that alcohol has been consumed by such person and in accordance with the rules and regulations established by the police force of which he is a member.
F. 
Blood alcohol content.
(1) 
Upon the trial of any action or proceeding arising out of actions alleged to have been committed by any person arrested for a violation of this section, the court shall admit evidence of the amount of alcohol or drugs in the defendant's blood as shown by a test administered pursuant to the provisions of this section.
(2) 
The following effect shall be given to evidence of blood alcohol content, as determined by such tests, of a person arrested for a violation of Subsection F(1):
(a) 
Evidence that there was .05 of 1% or less by weight of alcohol in such person's blood shall be prima facie evidence that the ability of such person to operate a snowmobile was not impaired by the consumption of alcohol, and that such person was not in an intoxicated condition.
(b) 
Evidence that there was more than .05 of 1% but no more than .07 of 1% by weight of alcohol in such person's blood shall be prima facie evidence that such person was not in an intoxicated condition, but such evidence shall be relevant evidence, but shall not be given prima facie effect, in determining whether the ability of such person to operate a snowmobile was impaired by the consumption of alcohol.
(c) 
Evidence that there was more than .07 of 1% but less than .08 of 1% by weight of alcohol in his blood shall be prima facie evidence that such person was not in an intoxicated condition, but such evidence shall be given prima facie effect in determining whether the ability of such person to operate a snowmobile was impaired by the consumption of alcohol.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
A. 
Except as herein otherwise provided, no person shall drive or operate any snowmobile on any snowmobile trail within the Town of Inlet, unless the owner or operator of the snowmobile has paid the annual snowmobile trail grooming charge, as hereinafter provided.
B. 
The Town of Inlet hereby imposes an annual snowmobile trail grooming charge for each snowmobile season, on each and every snowmobile operated on any snowmobile trail within the Town of Inlet, excluding snowmobile trails which are situate on New York State Forest Preserve Lands.
C. 
The Town Board of the Town of Inlet shall, by resolution, commencing in October of 1998, and every October thereafter, fix the annual snowmobile trail grooming charge for each ensuing snowmobile season.
D. 
Upon the payment of the annual snowmobile trail grooming charge, the Town of Inlet shall cause to be issued a sticker for the snowmobile, which sticker shall be conspicuously displayed upon the windshield of that snowmobile. The issuance of the sticker for a snowmobile will enable the snowmobile to be operated on any snowmobile trail within the Town of Inlet, for the period of December 1 to November 30.
E. 
The Town Clerk and any other person or corporation designated by the Town Board shall have the authority to issue such snowmobile trail grooming stickers on behalf of the Town upon payment of the annual snowmobile trail grooming charge.
F. 
Exemptions. No annual snowmobile trail grooming charge shall be required for the following described snowmobiles:
(1) 
Snowmobiles owned and used by the United States, New York State or any political subdivision thereof.
(2) 
Snowmobiles owned and used by fire companies, ambulance squads and rescue squads, providing that said snowmobile is used by said organization in the furtherance of its activities and not for recreational purposes.
A. 
No snowmobile shall be operated on any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highway designated as open to the public in the Town of Inlet, unless the owner of such snowmobile has secured a policy of insurance, affording coverage against liability imposed by law for bodily injury or death and for property damage to at least the minimum limits as required by the provisions of § 25.13 of the Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Law of the State of New York and the regulations promulgated thereunder.
B. 
The owner of a snowmobile shall maintain proof of financial security by means of a certificate of insurance, indicating compliance with the minimum coverage requirements of that section. The failure to produce such certificate of insurance, when required to do so, upon the demand of a magistrate, state, county or local police officer which such vehicle is being operated on any highway or public highway which includes snowmobile trails in the Town of Inlet, shall be presumptive evidence of operating a snowmobile without securing such policy of insurance.
C. 
This section specifically supersedes those provisions of § 25.13(1) of the New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Law by requiring liability insurance for operation on all snowmobile trails.
No person under the age of 10 years shall operate a snowmobile unless upon lands owned or leased by his parents or guardian or unless he or she is accompanied by a person 18 years of age or older or a person over 14 years of age who holds a snowmobile safety certificate.
Negligence in the use or operation of a snowmobile shall be attributable to the owner. Every owner of a snowmobile used or operated in the Town of Inlet or in this state shall be liable and responsible for death or injury to a person or damage to property resulting from negligence in the use or operation of such snowmobile by any person using or operating the same with the permission, express or implied, of such owner, provided, however, that such operator's negligence shall not be attributed to the owner as to any claim or cause of action accruing to the operator or his legal representative for such injuries or death.
A. 
With respect to injuries arising from the operation of snowmobiles, no civil action shall be maintained against the Town of Inlet or an officer thereof, for damages or injuries to person or property sustained by reason of any snowmobile trail, highway, bridge, street, sidewalk, crosswalk or culvert being defective, out of repair, unsafe, dangerous or obstructed, unless prior written notice of such defective, unsafe, dangerous or obstructed condition on such snowmobile trail, highway, bridge or culvert was actually given to the municipal agent, officer or employee authorized by § 311 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules to receive service or to the chief municipal officer in charge of highway supervision and maintenance, and there was a failure or neglect within a reasonable time thereafter to repair or remove the defect, danger or obstruction complained of. No such action shall be maintained for damages or injuries to person or property sustained solely due to conditions caused by snow and/or ice removal, or the nonremoval thereof, from any Town of Inlet snowmobile trail or highways designated as open to snowmobiles in the Town of Inlet.
B. 
Any municipal officer or employee designated to receive service of process shall transmit in writing to the Clerk of the Town of Inlet within 24 hours or as soon as practical after the receipt thereof, all written notices received by him pursuant to this section.
Owners, operators and drivers of snowmobiles on the Town of Inlet's snowmobile trail system shall fully comply with Title D, Articles 21 and 25 of the Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Law of the State of New York. If at any time there is a conflict between the provisions of this chapter and the provisions of the Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Law, the more restrictive provision shall apply and the more severe penalty for a violation shall apply.
A. 
In addition to the penalties imposed by § 134-8 of this chapter and any penalty contained in any other provision of law, any person who shall violate any other provision of this chapter other than § 134-8 shall be guilty of a violation and shall be punished by a fine of not more than $250 and/or 15 days in the county jail.
B. 
A notice of violation may be issued by any state police officer, County Sheriff, Town police officer or constable, conservation officer, parks and recreation officer, or by any other law enforcement official or other person so designated by the Town of Inlet.
C. 
Such authorized individual may initiate a violation by service of a appearance ticket.
Upon this chapter taking effect, Local Law No. 1 of the year of 1973, Local Law No. 1 of the year of 1982 and Local Law No. 1 of the year of 1986 shall be rescinded and repealed in their entirety.