A Utility Task Vehicle (also called Utility Terrain Vehicle, Utility Type Vehicle, or "Side-by-Side" vehicle) is a versatile piece of equipment used in a variety of agricultural, construction, and industrial settings. UTVs can be dangerous if not operated correctly. Department chairs, facility managers, or supervisors of areas where UTVs are used are responsible for ensuring UTV users are provided training before use. 

UTV's can have four or six wheels and are powered by diesel, gasoline engines, electric or a hydrogen fuel cell. Most models include a bed to enable the hauling of feed, mulch, or other supplies, which makes them convenient transport for small jobs. UTV's are available from different manufacturers in a variety of models.

Utility type vehicles have a steering wheel, acceleration foot pedal, and a brake foot pedal. These vehicles are designed to carry passengers and have side-by-side or bench seating, seat belts and an occupant protective structure, which commonly includes a system of tubular bars, surrounding the space where the operator and/or passenger are seated. Other protective features might include hard plastic doors, sturdy canvas netting, or handholds. 

UTV Operator Training

UTV operators must be trained to understand the features, controls, safe operations and limitations of the specific UTV model they will be using. An annual refresher training may be required as well.

The training covers the following learning objectives about UTVs:

  • Identify the characteristics and used.
  • Explain the features and controls.
  • Discuss the stability and load capacity.
  • Describe preventative maintenance and pre-operation checks.
  • Recognize the hazards associated with operation.
  • Outline safe operating procedures.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established rules and guidelines for the protection of workers and facilities relating to agricultural equipment in 29 CFR 1910, General Industry and 29 CFR 1928 Occupational Safety and Health Standards for Agriculture.

To complete UTV Operator Training, do the following:

  1. Review the UTV Operating Training (powerpoint). At the end, you will be prompted to take a quiz.
  2. Login to the online training (see Quick Link) 
  3. Find the Utility Vehicle Quiz under "Specific Training".
  4. Scroll down to the Quiz and click on "Go to Lesson."
  5. Supervisor then provides model-specific, hands-on training, including controls and safe operation.

Supervisor note: This training may also be conducted on an individual basis or in a classroom group setting using lecture and discussion. Training materials for supervisors to conduct this training can be obtained from the resources linked below.


Additional Resources:



If you have any questions, please contact safety@uvm.edu