Electric Powered All Purpose Vehicle Use Permits For Mobility Impaired Persons On Designated Roads On State Wildlife Areas
Download the permit application
The ODNR Division of Wildlife has long sought to provide enhanced access for persons with mobility impairments to interior areas of Division of Wildlife administered public wildlife areas while limiting disturbance to other hunters and minimizing negative impacts to wildlife habitat.
Current Division of Wildlife hunting regulations designate nine motor vehicle access lanes on wildlife areas for use by hunters with disabilities to drive their car or truck to interior areas. With the restriction on discharging a firearm from a vehicle, mobility impaired hunters are forced to leave their vehicle to establish a hunting position and negotiate terrain with limited accessibility. These access lanes create at best, very limited hunting opportunity for persons with disabilities. This new permit and rule change will remove the restrictions and limitations of the access lanes.
Permit holders will be exempt from the prohibition of discharging a firearm from in or on their vehicle while using the designated access roads. In addition to a car or truck, the permit will allow use of Electric Powered All Purpose Vehicles (EPAPVs) on these designated access roads for permit holders. Mobility impaired persons with a permit will be permitted to traverse 100 yards with an EPAPV only from the edge of designated roads to establish a hunting position. EPAPVs are quiet, clean, and pollution-free. They are reasonably priced and are available from multiple manufacturers with various models to choose from.
The new permit system establishes one wetland, one forestland and one grassland hunting area in each of the Division of Wildlife’s five geographic districts of the state for a total of 15 designated areas statewide. Ideally, this will provide hunters with mobility impairments the full range of hunting opportunities evenly distributed across the state.
These EPAPVs will allow hunters with mobility impairments to reach areas that were previously inaccessible without disturbing other hunters or damaging valued wildlife habitat. This new policy is a great leap forward for the sportsmen and women of Ohio.
To clarify, the old rules on handicapped access lanes are replaced with new rules requiring that only mobility impaired persons with permits issued by the Division of Wildlife are now authorized to use an EPAPV or motor vehicle on the designated access lanes on Wildlife Areas
1. What does the new permit for mobility impaired persons allow?
• The Electric Powered All Purpose Vehicle (EPAPV)/Motor Vehicle Use Permit for Persons with Mobility Impairments allows use of an EPAPV with a 30 horsepower and/or use of a motor vehicle as defined in section 4501.01 B of the Ohio Revised Code on designated access roads on specific state wildlife areas for all those who meet established medical criteria.
2. What is an EPAPV?
• Electric Powered All Purpose Vehicle means any battery-powered vehicle that is designated primarily for cross-country travel on land, water or land and water that is steered by wheels, caterpillar treads or a combination of wheels and caterpillar treads.
3. Will persons with disabilities other than those that have mobility impairments be permitted to use an EPAPV or motor vehicle on the access roads?
• No. The designated access roads are for mobility impaired persons only who meet the established medical criteria and who were issued a permit by the Division of Wildlife. Only valid permit holders and persons who accompany permit holders (see question 8) are authorized to use an EPAPV or motor vehicle on the designated access roads.
4. Are gas or propane powered All Purpose Vehicles permitted on the access roads?
• No. All Purpose Vehicles powered by batteries only may be used on the access roads.
5. Can a permit holder take an EPAPV or motor vehicle off the designated road?
• A permit holder is permitted to traverse with an EPAPV only within 100 yards perpendicular from edge of those roads posted and specifically designated for EPAPV/motor vehicle use. Motor vehicles are not permitted off the designated roads.
6. Can a permit holder carry a firearm?
• Yes. A permit holder may possess a loaded firearm on or in a parked EPAPV or motor vehicle. The EPAPV or motor vehicle however, must be at a complete stop with the motor turned off. The firearm shall be unloaded at all times while the EPAPV or motor vehicle is in motion and/or while the EPAPV or motor vehicle is running.
7. Can a permit holder discharge a firearm from an EPAPV or motor vehicle while on the designated road?
• Yes. A permit holder may use the parked EPAPV or motor vehicle as a blind and as a platform for discharging a firearm only while on a designated access road on state wildlife areas.
8. Can a permit holder be accompanied by other persons?
• Yes. A permit holder can be accompanied by other persons. * Persons accompanying the permit holder who are participating in hunting must have a valid hunting license and shall not be permitted to use the EPAPV or Motor Vehicle as a platform for discharging a firearm. Persons accompanying the permit holder who are not carrying a hunting implement are not required to have a valid hunting license.
9. Can a permit holder possess more than one loaded firearm while in or on an EPAPV or motor vehicle?
• No. A permit holder may not possess more than one loaded firearm in or on the parked EPAPV or motor vehicle at any one time (with the exception of persons possessing a valid concealed carry license).
10. What is the legal method to transport a firearm in or on a moving EPAPV or motor vehicle?
• A permit holder may transport a firearm in or on a moving EPAPV or motor vehicle in one of the following ways:
- In a closed package, box or case;
- In a compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle.
- In plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for the purpose.
- In plain sight with the action opened or the weapon stripped, or, if the firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or that cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight.
11. Which wildlife areas have designated access roads for use by mobility impaired hunters carrying a valid permit?
12. How can I find the access roads?
• Wildlife area maps available from the Division of Wildlife show specific locations of the access roads.
• Roads will be posted with signs on the wildlife areas designating them for use by permit holders only.
13. What are the established medical criteria or minimum requirements to receive a permit?
Applicant must provide documentation from a licensed physician of any of the following three types of permanent medical disabilities:
Severely limited mobility – permanent or irreversible physical disability that prevents ability to ambulate without use of a wheelchair, walker, crutches, one leg brace or external prosthesis above the knee, two leg braces or external prostheses below the knees for mobility. Occasional use of only one device does not qualify. The patient must require a device for mobility and be unable to ambulate without one. Other qualifying criteria are those patients which have multiple conditions that result in a minimum of 90% loss of use of a lower extremity. This standard is substantial and is seldom met where the patient does not require artificial support to perform activities of daily living.
Lung disease – to the extent that forced expiratory volume for one second when measured by spirometry is less than one liter or the arterial oxygen tension is less than 60 millimeters of mercury on room air at rest. Documentation of specific pulmonary function testing is required. The patient must meet the standard continuously from the date of the test to the date of application.
Cardiovascular disease – to the extent that functional limitations are classified in severity as class 3 or 4, according to standards accepted by the American Heart Association since May 3, 1988 and where ordinary physical activity causes palpitation, dyspnea or anginal pain. Documentation of specific cardiovascular function testing is required. The patient must meet the standard continuously from the date of the test to the date of application.
Permits will not be issued based solely on disability from pain, fatigue or from the normal aging process. Due to their subjective nature, impairment due to pain, fatigue and aging must be supported by specific causes and the loss of function substantiated due to such conditions.
14. How does a person obtain a permit?
• Applications are available from all Division of Wildlife District offices, Columbus headquarters or a downloadable version from the Division of Wildlife Web site.
• Applications must be completed by a licensed physician in addition to the applicant.
• Applications should be sent to the Division of Wildlife, EPAPV Permit, at 2045 Morse Rd., Building G, Columbus, Ohio 43229-6693
• Allow up to six weeks for processing.
15. How much do the permits cost and how long are they valid?
• Permits are issued free of charge.
• Permits are valid for the hunting license year only (March 1- February 28) and must be renewed on an annual basis due to potential changes in medical conditions.
16. Can I hunt from a vehicle on private property?
ON PRIVATE LAND:
All hunting from motor vehicles, is prohibited with the following exceptions:
• Except from boats that are not under power and stationary, and machinery being used in farm operations
• Discharge of a firearm from a motor vehicle at a coyote or groundhog is permissible if the discharge is not during deer gun hunting season and the discharge is lawfully following the below restrictions under the Ohio Revised Code 2923.16
(a)The motor vehicle from which the person discharges the firearm must be on real property that is located in an unincorporated area of a township and that either is zoned for agriculture or is used for agriculture.
(b) The person must own the real property described in division (F)(2)(b) of this section, or is the spouse or a child of another person who owns that real property, or is a tenant of another person who owns that real property, or is the spouse or a child of a tenant of another person who owns that real property.
(c) The person can not discharge the firearm in any of the following manners:
(i) While under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or alcohol and a drug of abuse;
(ii) In the direction of a street, highway, or other public or private property used by the public for vehicular traffic or parking;
(iii) At or into an occupied structure that is a permanent or temporary habitation;
(iv) In the commission of any violation of law, including, but not limited to, a felony that includes, as an essential element, purposely or knowingly causing or attempting to cause the death of or physical harm to another and that was committed by discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle.
ON STATE WILDLIFE AREAS:
• Only mobility impaired persons who meet established medical criteria and who are issued a permit by the Division of Wildlife may discharge a firearm from in or on an EPAPV or motor vehicle while hunting from a designated access road on a state wildlife area. 15 access roads have been designated for use by EPAPV permit holders on state wildlife areas.
The section in the Ohio Revised Code on improperly handling firearms in a motor vehicle is Ohio Revised Code 2923.16.