Texas Transportation Code
Sec. § 541.201
Vehicles


In this subtitle:

(1)

“Authorized emergency vehicle” means:

(A)

a fire department or police vehicle;

(B)

a public or private ambulance operated by a person who has been issued a license by the Department of State Health Services;

(C)

an emergency medical services vehicle:

(i)

authorized under an emergency medical services provider license issued by the Department of State Health Services under Chapter 773 (Emergency Medical Services), Health and Safety Code; and

(ii)

operating under a contract with an emergency services district that requires the emergency medical services provider to respond to emergency calls with the vehicle;

(D)

a municipal department or public service corporation emergency vehicle that has been designated or authorized by the governing body of a municipality;

(E)

a county-owned or county-leased emergency management vehicle that has been designated or authorized by the commissioners court;

(F)

a vehicle that has been designated by the department under Section 546.0065 (Authorized Emergency Vehicles of the Texas Division of Emergency Management);

(G)

a private vehicle of a volunteer firefighter or a certified emergency medical services employee or volunteer when responding to a fire alarm or medical emergency;

(H)

an industrial emergency response vehicle, including an industrial ambulance, when responding to an emergency, but only if the vehicle is operated in compliance with criteria in effect September 1, 1989, and established by the predecessor of the Texas Industrial Emergency Services Board of the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshals’ Association of Texas;

(I)

a vehicle of a blood bank or tissue bank, accredited or approved under the laws of this state or the United States, when making emergency deliveries of blood, drugs, medicines, or organs;

(J)

a vehicle used for law enforcement purposes that is owned or leased by a federal governmental entity; or

(K)

a private vehicle of an employee or volunteer of a county emergency management division in a county with a population of more than 46,500 and less than 48,000 that is designated as an authorized emergency vehicle by the commissioners court of that county.

(2)

“Bicycle” means a device that a person may ride and that:

(A)

is capable of being ridden solely using human power; and

(B)

has two tandem wheels at least one of which is more than 14 inches in diameter.

(3)

“Bus” means:

(A)

a motor vehicle used to transport persons and designed to accommodate more than 10 passengers, including the operator; or

(B)

a motor vehicle, other than a taxicab, designed and used to transport persons for compensation.

(4)

“Farm tractor” means a motor vehicle designed and used primarily as a farm implement to draw an implement of husbandry, including a plow or a mowing machine.

(5)

“House trailer” means a trailer or semitrailer, other than a towable recreational vehicle, that:

(A)

is transportable on a highway in one or more sections;

(B)

is less than 45 feet in length, excluding tow bar, while in the traveling mode;

(C)

is built on a permanent chassis;

(D)

is designed to be used as a dwelling or for commercial purposes if connected to required utilities; and

(E)

includes plumbing, heating, air-conditioning, and electrical systems.

(6)

“Implement of husbandry” means:

(A)

a vehicle, other than a passenger car or truck, that is designed and adapted for use as a farm implement, machinery, or tool for tilling the soil;

(B)

a towed vehicle that transports to the field and spreads fertilizer or agricultural chemicals; or

(C)

a motor vehicle designed and adapted to deliver feed to livestock.

(7)

“Light truck” means a truck, including a pickup truck, panel delivery truck, or carryall truck, that has a manufacturer’s rated carrying capacity of 2,000 pounds or less.

(8)

“Moped” means a motor vehicle that is equipped with a rider’s saddle and designed to have when propelled not more than three wheels on the ground, that cannot attain a speed in one mile of more than 30 miles per hour, and the engine of which:

(A)

cannot produce more than five-brake horsepower; and

(B)

if an internal combustion engine, has a piston displacement of 50 cubic centimeters or less and connects to a power drive system that does not require the operator to shift gears.

(9)

“Motorcycle” means a motor vehicle, other than a tractor or moped, that is equipped with a rider’s saddle and designed to have when propelled not more than three wheels on the ground.

(10)

Repealed by Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 882 (H.B. 3171), Sec. 3.01(3), eff. September 1, 2019.

(11)

“Motor vehicle” means a self-propelled vehicle or a vehicle that is propelled by electric power from overhead trolley wires. The term does not include an electric bicycle or an electric personal assistive mobility device, as defined by Section 551.201 (Definition).

(11-a)

“Multifunction school activity bus” means a motor vehicle that was manufactured in compliance with the federal motor vehicle safety standards for school buses in effect on the date of manufacture other than the standards requiring the bus to display alternately flashing red lights and to be equipped with movable stop arms, and that is used to transport preprimary, primary, or secondary students on a school-related activity trip other than on routes to and from school. The term does not include a school bus, a school activity bus, a school-chartered bus, or a bus operated by a mass transit authority.

(12)

“Passenger car” means a motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, used to transport persons and designed to accommodate 10 or fewer passengers, including the operator.

(13)

“Pole trailer” means a vehicle without motive power:

(A)

designed to be drawn by another vehicle and secured to the other vehicle by pole, reach, boom, or other security device; and

(B)

ordinarily used to transport a long or irregularly shaped load, including poles, pipes, or structural members, generally capable of sustaining themselves as beams between the supporting connections.

(13-a)

“Police vehicle” means a vehicle used by a peace officer, as defined by Article 2.12 (Who Are Peace Officers), Code of Criminal Procedure, for law enforcement purposes that:

(A)

is owned or leased by a governmental entity;

(B)

is owned or leased by the police department of a private institution of higher education that commissions peace officers under Section 51.212 (Peace Officers at Private Institutions), Education Code; or

(C)

is:

(i)

a private vehicle owned or leased by the peace officer; and

(ii)

approved for use for law enforcement purposes by the head of the law enforcement agency that employs the peace officer, or by that person’s designee, provided that use of the private vehicle must, if applicable, comply with any rule adopted by the commissioners court of a county under Section 170.001 (Regulation of Certain Use of Privately Owned Vehicles), Local Government Code, and that the private vehicle may not be considered an authorized emergency vehicle for exemption purposes under Section 228.054 (Toll Payment Required; Emergency Vehicles Exempt), 284.070 (Nonpayment of Toll; Offense), 366.178 (Failure or Refusal to Pay Toll), or 370.177 (Failure or Refusal to Pay Turnpike Project Toll; Offense; Administrative Penalty), Transportation Code, unless the vehicle is marked.

(14)

“Road tractor” means a motor vehicle designed and used to draw another vehicle but not constructed to carry a load independently or a part of the weight of the other vehicle or its load.

(15)

“School activity bus” means a bus designed to accommodate more than 15 passengers, including the operator, that is owned, operated, rented, or leased by a school district, county school, open-enrollment charter school, regional education service center, or shared services arrangement and that is used to transport public school students on a school-related activity trip, other than on routes to and from school. The term does not include a chartered bus, a bus operated by a mass transit authority, a school bus, or a multifunction school activity bus.

(16)

“School bus” means a motor vehicle that was manufactured in compliance with the federal motor vehicle safety standards for school buses in effect on the date of manufacture and that is used to transport pre-primary, primary, or secondary students on a route to or from school or on a school-related activity trip other than on routes to and from school. The term does not include a school-chartered bus or a bus operated by a mass transit authority.

(17)

“Semitrailer” means a vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer:

(A)

designed to be drawn by a motor vehicle and to transport persons or property; and

(B)

constructed so that part of the vehicle’s weight and load rests on or is carried by another vehicle.

(18)

“Special mobile equipment” means a vehicle that is not designed or used primarily to transport persons or property and that is only incidentally operated on a highway. The term:

(A)

includes ditchdigging apparatus, well boring apparatus, and road construction and maintenance machinery, including an asphalt spreader, bituminous mixer, bucket loader, tractor other than a truck tractor, ditcher, levelling grader, finishing machine, motor grader, road roller, scarifier, earth-moving carryall and scraper, power shovel or dragline, or self-propelled crane and earth-moving equipment; and

(B)

excludes a vehicle that is designed to transport persons or property and that has machinery attached, including a house trailer, dump truck, truck-mounted transit mixer, crane, and shovel.

(19)

“Towable recreational vehicle” means a nonmotorized vehicle that:

(A)

is designed:

(i)

to be towable by a motor vehicle; and

(ii)

for temporary human habitation for uses including recreational camping or seasonal use;

(B)

is permanently built on a single chassis;

(C)

may contain one or more life-support systems; and

(D)

may be used permanently or temporarily for advertising, selling, displaying, or promoting merchandise or services, but is not used for transporting property for hire or for distribution by a private carrier.

(20)

“Trailer” means a vehicle, other than a pole trailer, with or without motive power:

(A)

designed to be drawn by a motor vehicle and to transport persons or property; and

(B)

constructed so that no part of the vehicle’s weight and load rests on the motor vehicle.

(21)

“Truck” means a motor vehicle designed, used, or maintained primarily to transport property.

(22)

“Truck tractor” means a motor vehicle designed and used primarily to draw another vehicle but not constructed to carry a load other than a part of the weight of the other vehicle and its load.

(23)

“Vehicle” means a device that can be used to transport or draw persons or property on a highway. The term does not include:

(A)

a device exclusively used on stationary rails or tracks; or

(B)

manufactured housing as that term is defined by Chapter 1201 (Manufactured Housing), Occupations Code.

(24)

“Electric bicycle” has the meaning assigned by Section 664.001 (Definitions).
Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 165, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1995. Amended by Acts, 75th Leg., ch. 1020, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1438, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 663, Sec. 1, eff. June 18, 1999; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 797, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1085, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 2001; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1318, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.833, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.
Amended by:
Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 558 (H.B. 1267), Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 258 (S.B. 11), Sec. 4.06, eff. September 1, 2007.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 923 (H.B. 3190), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2007.
Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1280 (H.B. 1831), Sec. 1.20, eff. September 1, 2009.
Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 17 (S.B. 223), Sec. 1, eff. May 10, 2013.
Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 254 (H.B. 567), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.
Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 275 (H.B. 802), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.
Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 630 (S.B. 1917), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 78 (S.B. 971), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2015.
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1236 (S.B. 1296), Sec. 17.007, eff. September 1, 2015.
Acts 2017, 85th Leg., R.S., Ch. 969 (S.B. 2076), Sec. 25, eff. September 1, 2017.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 485 (H.B. 2188), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2019.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 882 (H.B. 3171), Sec. 1.07, eff. September 1, 2019.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 882 (H.B. 3171), Sec. 3.01(3), eff. September 1, 2019.
Source
Last accessed
Aug. 12, 2020