RL4WD Risk Management Guidelines For Chapters, Elders, Trail Guides & Trail Ambassadors

The Road Legal 4WD Association is comprised of multiple chapters throughout the USA. Our common values are safety and education in everything we do. Our members, friends, family safety are our top priority.

There must be at least one paid member in each vehicle when a trail riding event is being hosted. Passengers of the paid member are considered household members of the paid member for the duration of the event.

Everyone at any RL4WD function will need to sign a waiver on-site or show the online yearly waiver badge that can be printed from a members online profile. Minor waivers must be signed by the parent or legal guardian only (no exceptions).

All vehicles must be DOT compliant for legal road use according to state and federal law. All vehicles must have valid liability insurance with limits that exceed local state law requirements. Vehicles must have DOT compliant restraints and roll bars / cage / OEM top. Vehicles without a top or roll cage will not be allowed to participate in any chapter function. All vehicles shall be in proper working order and have a legal exhaust system and need to be checked by a chapter volunteer before an event begins.

All vehicles must contain an ABC automotive fire extinguisher along with front and rear tow points. Vehicle recovery and first aid kits are required for hosts, guides and elders and are highly encouraged for all vehicles as well.

All events must have trained volunteers on site to be considered a RL4WD sanctioned event.

Under no circumstances shall a chapter or guide host a timed or wheel to wheel competition without prior approval and insurance from the Road Legal 4WD Association. These events will require additional special event risk management and special event insurance.

Chapters are encouraged to be a non-profit club entity. Proof of such organization will be needed before we can proceed with universal membership splits and insurance participation. Chapters are required to keep a separate banking account and expenditures should be appropriate based on the operational procedures and bylaws set within the chapter. A yearly statement of receipts will need to be presented to the RL4WD in order to renew sanctions for the coming year.




All volunteers will be required to pass a standard criminal background check. This background check must be clear of any violent crimes. Volunteers can request a criminal exception from the advisory board which must pass by vote.

Chapter Hosts - The organizers of the Chapter will be required to take the Chapter Training online as well as in person (when possible). The chapter hosts are responsible for keeping a copy of the event waivers indefinitely if needed in an incident. Chapter Hosts will be required to document any accidents, injuries or vehicle damage and fill out a report of what happened. A Chapter Host will then need to send in the report along with the waiver for all parties involved within 7 business days.

Tour Guides - Tour Guides are required to complete the online and on-site training sessions before being allowed to take a small group of riders out on public or private trails. Tour Guide volunteers also need to take the Tour Guide refresher course once every 24 months and will be required to keep all waivers indefinitely if not affiliated with any one chapter.

Trail Guides - Trail Guides will need to complete the online and on-site training and certification courses. Online refresher courses will also be required online every 24 months. Tour Guides are responsible for picking trail types based on the least experienced driver or least capable vehicle.

Elders - Elders must complete the online volunteer class before they can assist with any local chapter event.


All trails should be scouted prior to an event (where applicable). Elders of a chapter should identify and sign or eliminate any safety hazard on the trails such as sharp objects and excessive brush.

Any trail with deep mud should be avoided. We advocate for ethical trail use and preservation. Excessive deep water or mud can cause severe damage to Road Legal 4WD vehicles as such, no RL4WD event shall traverse these types of trails unless an act of God caused it during an event and it must be crossed/can’t be avoided.

Do not cut switchbacks or take shortcuts. All water crossings should be at designated points that have a prepared rock bottom (best to route over a bridge when possible).

Vehicles should be in 4WD low at all times to prevent trail damage and accidents that involve any type of speed.


Defined Events

Trail Rides - A ride with a group of RL4WD vehicles that have elders as lead and sweep drivers and Trail Guides that may be needed for technical help through more difficult terrain.

Meet & Greets - A function where members congregate and are not driving trails.

Education Classes or Workshops - A volunteer-run class for a local chapter that trains drivers for trail riding. These small sessions may also be part of a trail ride.

GeoCrawls - Casual rides on public trails or private events where members find trail listings and then review the trails they rode via the online directory.

EnduroCrawl - A slow-speed (1-5 MPH), single file, timed event with permit on trails. Additional risk management and insurance will be required before a chapter can host these types of events.

Car Show/Show & Shine - An event that is hosted by a local chapter in a show type setting. Additional risk management and insurance will be required before a chapter can host these types of events.

Any other competition type event will need to be approved and insured before it can be advertised as a RL4WD event.

Responses (0)
No response for this article yet.
Submit Your Response
Upload files or images for this discussion by clicking on the upload button below. Supports gif,jpg,png,jpeg,zip,rar,pdf,.FTM400,csv,tab,JPG,gpx,kml,
• Insert • Remove Upload Files (Maximum File Size: 10 MB)
You may insert polls into your post. The poll would then appear in the post.
Vote Options
Share Location

Sharing your current location while posting a new question allow viewers to identify the location you are located.