In the state of Alaska, motorcycles are defined as a vehicle with a seat or saddle that has no more than three wheels that touch the ground. This is distinctive from tractors, all-terrain vehicles, and motor-driven cycles, which are similar to motorcycles, but with 50 cc or less displacement. To drive a motorcycle, you need a class M license. To qualify for a motorcycle license, an individual must be at least 16 years old and have held a permit for six months.
Motorcycle License Requirements
- Written knowledge test
- Written motorcycle knowledge test
- Vision test
- Parental consent (if under 18)
- Motorcycle road test
As an alternative for the written motorcycle test and the motorcycle road tests, applicants can prove that they passed a Motorcycle Rider Course in the current or previous year by showing their Motorcycle Safety Foundation cards.
Alaska has mandatory motorcycle insurance laws and financial responsibility insurance laws. The mandatory motorcycle insurance requirements in Alaska are for the vehicle owner or driver to have bodily injury or death coverage of $50,000 per person and $100,000 per accident. Property damage insurance must cover at least $25,000. Drivers that are responsible for collisions are required under the financial responsibility law to pay for all damages and injuries caused by the collision. Drivers must have proof of insurance in their vehicles at all times. There are three ways to procure insurance:
- Post Bond with the DMV – In paying a large sum of money upfront, your vehicle will be insured.
- Self-Insure – Often used by individuals with large numbers of vehicles, self-insurance is when money is set aside, similarly to an insurance premium, to cover the potential for loss.
- Buy insurance – Using a broker or agent who determines the best policy that is offered through motorcycle insurance companies, these motorcycle insurance premiums are paid in sums over time.
Each state has its own criteria for determining insurance rates. In Alaska, insurance companies look at age, gender, marital status, occupation, and the type of vehicle. Males and unmarried couples are considered to have higher risk than females and married couples. In addition, the more driving you do a day, the higher your premium will be. Expensive cars and motorcycles generally cost more to insure as well. Insurance companies also look at a person’s driving history. A long history of accidents and traffic tickets may result in higher motorcycle insurance costs. Too many accidents may interfere with a driver’s ability to get insurance, and they may need to look into other options, like posting bond with the DMV, instead.
It is important to follow all state laws regarding motorcycles and motor vehicles in general. By failing to follow these laws, you run the risk of speeding tickets, higher motorcycle insurance premiums, and even, in extreme cases, the loss of your license. Below are the motorcycle laws for Alaska.
- Safety helmets must conform to regulations provided by the commissioner of public safety.
- Eye protection is required by law; the exception is for motorcycles with windscreens that are 15″ or higher above handlebars.
- There are various regulations on the usage of headlights.
- A passenger seat is required with passenger.
- A passenger footrest is required with passenger.
- Periodic safety inspections are required.
- Mirrors Left(L) and Right(R) are required.
- The handlebar height can be at a maximum of 15″ above the seat.
- Two motorcycles can operate abreast in the same lane.
- No drivers of motorcycles are allowed to drive between lanes.