[Rev. 11/21/2013 11:28:26 AM--2013]

CHAPTER 405 - CONTROL AND PRESERVATION OF PUBLIC HIGHWAYS

LIMITS ON LOAD AND WEIGHT

NRS 405.010           Limiting maximum load upon or closing road damaged by heavy loads; procedure; penalties.

BILLBOARDS, SIGNS AND ADVERTISING

NRS 405.020           Billboard, sign or other outdoor advertising as public nuisance.

NRS 405.030           Unlawful placement of certain outdoor advertisements; exceptions; restriction on use of revenue from certain lawfully placed advertisements.

NRS 405.040           Permit for erection or use of outdoor advertisement; fee; exceptions.

NRS 405.050           No permit to be granted if natural beauty of scenery destroyed or view of highway obstructed; removal of sign as traffic hazard.

NRS 405.060           Assignment of number for permit.

NRS 405.070           Duration of permit; destruction of advertisement if permit not renewed.

NRS 405.080           Apportionment of fees to road funds of county.

NRS 405.090           Report of violation.

NRS 405.100           Penalty.

NRS 405.110           Unlawful advertising on or near highway or on bridge; exceptions; removal; penalty; liability; restriction on use of revenue from certain lawfully placed advertisements.

PROTECTION OF HIGHWAYS FROM DAMAGE BY WATER

NRS 405.120           Installation of bridge or culvert if water conducted across highway; construction and repair performed according to specifications of county commissioners.

NRS 405.130           Notice of violation by chair of county commissioners; repair by county if violator fails or refuses to repair.

NRS 405.140           Recovery of expenses from violator by civil action.

NRS 405.150           District attorney to commence action for recovery of expenses.

NRS 405.160           Disposition of money collected by civil action.

NRS 405.170           Penalty for failure to construct bridge or culvert.

NRS 405.180           Penalty for willfully or negligently allowing water to flow on highway; failure to act upon notice prima facie evidence of negligence.

MAINTENANCE AND USE OF PUBLIC ROADS

NRS 405.191           “Public road” defined; county roads and highways may be established on rights-of-way over certain public lands.

NRS 405.193           Public agency not required to maintain or accept road made public by prescriptive use; immunity of county from liability arising from use of certain public roads.

NRS 405.195           Petition to open, reopen, close, relocate or abandon road; hearings and orders by board of county commissioners regarding petition; legal actions authorized.

ACCESSORY ROADS

NRS 405.201           Definitions.

NRS 405.202           Use and maintenance; fee prohibited; immunity of state and local governments from liability arising from use.

NRS 405.203           Closure or restriction of use.

NRS 405.204           Legislative findings and declaration; action by Attorney General authorized.

MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

NRS 405.205           Erection and maintenance of power lines by rural electric cooperative.

NRS 405.210           Damage to public or private road, bridge or guidepost unlawful; penalty.

NRS 405.230           Penalty for obstruction or damage to highway; abatement of nuisance; removal of certain obstacles or encroachments.

NRS 405.240           Repair of damage to highway from driving livestock.

NRS 405.250           Construction and maintenance of sidewalks; penalty for riding or driving on sidewalk.

NRS 405.270           Standards of safety for electronic gates that provide access for vehicular traffic.

_________

LIMITS ON LOAD AND WEIGHT

      NRS 405.010  Limiting maximum load upon or closing road damaged by heavy loads; procedure; penalties.

      1.  Whenever, by reason of excessive moisture or a lack of moisture, a section of public road or highway under the supervision of a board of county highway commissioners or board of county commissioners is damaged by heavy loads, the board of county highway commissioners or board of county commissioners having supervision over the section of public road or highway may:

      (a) Close the section of public road or highway to such extent and for such time as may be necessary.

      (b) Fix the maximum load which may pass over the section of public road or highway.

      2.  Notices of the closing of any section of public road or highway or limiting of the maximum load which may pass over the section of public road or highway under the provisions of this section must be given by placing a notice at each end of the section of road or highway to be protected, after the board of county highway commissioners or board of county commissioners has passed a resolution to that effect, which resolution must appear upon the minutes of the board of county highway commissioners or board of county commissioners. The notice must state that the section of road is closed to traffic or state the maximum load which may be drawn or carried over the section of road or highway.

      3.  Unless a greater penalty is provided in NRS 202.287, a person who defaces, destroys, shoots or removes any sign or notice so erected or placed is guilty of a misdemeanor.

      4.  Any person who passes over a section of road so closed, or who carries over the section of road any load in excess of the weight stated in the resolution of the board of county highway commissioners or board of county commissioners and as stated in the notice, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000, and is liable for any damage that may be done to any section of public road or highway as the result of the unlawful passage. If a fine is imposed pursuant to this section, the costs of the proceeding, including investigative costs and attorney’s fees, may be recovered by the board.

      [1:184:1925; A 1933, 118; 1931 NCL § 5439] + [2:184:1925; A 1933, 118; 1931 NCL § 5440]—(NRS A 1957, 518; 1967, 569; 1989, 1242; 1993, 897)

BILLBOARDS, SIGNS AND ADVERTISING

      NRS 405.020  Billboard, sign or other outdoor advertising as public nuisance.  Any billboard, sign, placard, notice or other form of outdoor advertisement erected, placed, painted, posted or maintained otherwise than is provided in NRS 405.020 to 405.100, inclusive, or in NRS 408.275 shall be deemed a public nuisance and shall be removed, effaced or destroyed by the sheriff and other peace officers having authority wherever such nuisance may be located.

      [1:90:1925; NCL § 260]—(NRS A 1969, 223)

      NRS 405.030  Unlawful placement of certain outdoor advertisements; exceptions; restriction on use of revenue from certain lawfully placed advertisements.

      1.  Except as otherwise provided in subsection 3 and NRS 277A.310, and except within the limits of any city or town through which the highway may run, and on benches and shelters for passengers of public mass transportation built pursuant to a franchise granted pursuant to NRS 244.187 and 244.188, 268.081 and 268.083, 269.128 and 269.129, or 277A.330, or on monorail stations, it is unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to paste, paint, print or in any manner whatever place or attach to any building, fence, gate, bridge, rock, tree, board, structure or anything whatever, any written, printed, painted or other outdoor advertisement, bill, notice, sign, picture, card or poster:

      (a) Within any right-of-way of any state highway or road which is owned or controlled by the Department of Transportation.

      (b) Within 20 feet of the main-traveled way of any unimproved highway.

      (c) On the property of another within view of any such highway, without the owner’s written consent.

      2.  Nothing in this section prevents the posting or maintaining of any notices required by law to be posted or maintained, or the placing or maintaining of highway signs giving directions and distances for the information of the traveling public if the signs are approved by the Department of Transportation.

      3.  A tenant of a mobile home park may exhibit a political sign within a right-of-way of a state highway or road which is owned or controlled by the Department of Transportation if the tenant exhibits the sign within the boundary of the tenant’s lot and in accordance with the requirements and limitations set forth in NRS 118B.145. As used in this subsection, the term “political sign” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 118B.145.

      4.  If a franchisee receives revenues from an advertisement, bill, notice, sign, picture, card or poster authorized by subsection 1 and the franchisee is obligated to repay a bond issued by the State of Nevada, the franchisee shall use all revenue generated by the advertisement, bill, notice, sign, picture, card or poster authorized by subsection 1 to meet its obligations to the State of Nevada as set forth in the financing agreement and bond indenture, including, without limitation, the payment of operations and maintenance obligations, the funding of reserves and the payment of debt service. To the extent that any surplus revenue remains after the payment of all such obligations, the surplus revenue must be used solely to repay the bond until the bond is repaid.

      5.  As used in this section, “monorail station” means:

      (a) A structure for the loading and unloading of passengers from a monorail for which a franchise has been granted pursuant to NRS 705.695 or an agreement has been entered into pursuant to NRS 705.695; and

      (b) Any facilities or appurtenances within such a structure.

      [2:90:1925; NCL § 261]—(NRS A 1957, 306; 1979, 1799; 1989, 995; 1999, 2047; 2001, 846; 2003, 3247; 2005, 2321; 2009, 866)

      NRS 405.040  Permit for erection or use of outdoor advertisement; fee; exceptions.

      1.  It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, association or corporation, personally or by agent, to erect, place or maintain any billboard, sign or any form of notice or advertising outside the city limits of any city or town:

      (a) On the public domain;

      (b) On land owned or leased by such advertiser or agent but not used as the site for manufacturing the goods or articles advertised; or

      (c) On the lands of another except where, by painting, an area of the barns or other outbuildings thereon may be preserved (for the purposes of this paragraph “area” is defined as the entire wall or roof aspect on which an advertisement may be painted),

Ê without first having secured from the county building official, if one has been appointed pursuant to NRS 278.570, or if not, from the county clerk of the county in which the sign may be located a permit to erect, or continue the use of, such sign, billboard or other form of notice or advertisement.

      2.  No permit for the erection of such sign, billboard or other form of advertisement shall be issued unless and until the applicant shall have paid a fee in the sum of $5. On the tender of the fee the county building official or county clerk shall issue the permit.

      3.  No fee shall be required for any billboard, sign or advertisement erected or placed by any farm bureau, chamber of commerce or lawful authority to advertise exclusively any city, town or geographic area, or public event.

      4.  This section shall not apply to the owner or occupant of any land outside the limits of any city, who may place or erect on the land or on the outbuildings thereon any sign or notice or advertisement intended to benefit the land or improvements thereon and advertise the business conducted in the buildings on the land.

      [3:90:1925; NCL § 262]—(NRS A 1971, 316; 2001, 1250)

      NRS 405.050  No permit to be granted if natural beauty of scenery destroyed or view of highway obstructed; removal of sign as traffic hazard.

      1.  No permit may be granted for the erection of any billboard, sign or other form of notice on any location which may measurably destroy the natural beauty of the scenery or obscure a view of the road ahead or of curves and grades or intersecting highways or railways.

      2.  If the Director of the Department of Transportation files a complaint with the board of county commissioners of any county showing that any sign erected is a hazard to traffic, the board of county commissioners shall order the removal of the sign.

      [4:90:1925; NCL § 264]—(NRS A 1979, 1799)

      NRS 405.060  Assignment of number for permit.  On granting a permit, the county building official or county clerk shall assign a permit number which shall be painted or printed, together with the name of the county in which the permit is issued, on every sign, billboard or other form of advertising, as the case may be, placed under NRS 405.020 to 405.100, inclusive.

      [Part 5:90:1925; NCL § 265]—(NRS A 1971, 316; 2001, 1251)

      NRS 405.070  Duration of permit; destruction of advertisement if permit not renewed.

      1.  The permit shall run to the end of the calendar year for which it is issued.

      2.  If the permit shall not be renewed, by application of the person or assignee of the person who applied originally for the permit to erect the sign, by February 1 of each year following, the board of county commissioners shall order the tearing down, removal or effacement of such sign or billboard, as the case may be.

      [Part 5:90:1925; NCL § 265]

      NRS 405.080  Apportionment of fees to road funds of county.  The money collected for the permits provided for in NRS 405.020 to 405.100, inclusive, shall be apportioned by the board of county commissioners to the road funds of the county.

      [6:90:1925; NCL § 266]

      NRS 405.090  Report of violation.  All patrol officers and maintenance and construction employees of the Department of Transportation shall report any violation of NRS 405.020 to 405.100, inclusive, to the board of county commissioners wherein any violation may occur.

      [7:90:1925; NCL § 267]—(NRS A 1979, 1799)

      NRS 405.100  Penalty.  Any person, firm, association or corporation who shall erect or maintain any billboard, sign, placard, poster or other form of advertising in violation of any of the provisions of NRS 405.020 to 405.100, inclusive, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

      [8:90:1925; NCL § 268]—(NRS A 1967, 570)

      NRS 405.110  Unlawful advertising on or near highway or on bridge; exceptions; removal; penalty; liability; restriction on use of revenue from certain lawfully placed advertisements.

      1.  Except on benches and shelters for passengers of public mass transportation for which a franchise has been granted pursuant to NRS 244.187 and 244.188, 268.081 and 268.083, 269.128 and 269.129, or 277A.310 and 277A.330, or on monorail stations, no advertising signs, signboards, boards or other materials containing advertising matter may:

      (a) Except as otherwise provided in subsection 3, be placed upon or over any state highway.

      (b) Except as otherwise provided in subsections 3 and 4, be placed within the highway right-of-way.

      (c) Except as otherwise provided in subsection 3, be placed upon any bridge or other structure thereon.

      (d) Be so situated with respect to any public highway as to obstruct clear vision of an intersecting highway or highways or otherwise so situated as to constitute a hazard upon or prevent the safe use of the state highway.

      2.  With the permission of the Department of Transportation, counties, towns or cities of this State may place at such points as are designated by the Director of the Department of Transportation suitable signboards advertising the counties, towns or municipalities.

      3.  A person may place an advertising sign, signboard, board or other material containing advertising matter in any airspace above a highway if:

      (a) The Department of Transportation has leased the airspace to the person pursuant to subsection 2 of NRS 408.507, the airspace is over an interstate highway and:

             (1) The purpose of the sign, signboard, board or other material is to identify a commercial establishment that is entirely located within the airspace, services rendered, or goods produced or sold upon the commercial establishment or that the facility or property that is located within the airspace is for sale or lease; and

             (2) The size, location and design of the sign, signboard, board or other material and the quantity of signs, signboards, boards or other materials have been approved by the Department of Transportation; or

      (b) The person owns real property adjacent to an interstate highway and:

             (1) The person has dedicated to a public authority a fee or perpetual easement interest in at least 1 acre of the property for the construction or maintenance, or both, of the highway over which the person is placing the sign, signboard, board or other material and the person retained the air rights in the airspace above the property for which the person has dedicated the interest;

             (2) The sign, signboard, board or other material is located in the airspace for which the person retained the air rights;

             (3) The structure that supports the sign, signboard, board or other material is not located on the property for which the person dedicated the fee or easement interest to the public authority, and the public authority determines that the location of the structure does not create a traffic hazard; and

             (4) The purpose of the sign, signboard, board or other material is to identify an establishment or activity that is located on the real property adjacent to the interstate highway, or services rendered or goods provided or sold on that property.

      4.  A tenant of a mobile home park may exhibit a political sign within a right-of-way of a state highway or road which is owned or controlled by the Department of Transportation if the tenant exhibits the sign within the boundary of the tenant’s lot and in accordance with the requirements and limitations set forth in NRS 118B.145. As used in this subsection, the term “political sign” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 118B.145.

      5.  If any such sign is placed in violation of this section, it is thereby declared a public nuisance and may be removed forthwith by the Department of Transportation or the public authority.

      6.  Any person placing any such sign in violation of the provisions of this section shall be punished by a fine of not more than $250, and is also liable in damages for any injury or injuries incurred or for injury to or loss of property sustained by any person by reason of the violation.

      7.  If a franchisee receives revenues from an advertising sign, signboard, board or other material containing advertising matter authorized by subsection 1 and the franchisee is obligated to repay a bond issued by the State of Nevada, the franchisee shall use all revenue generated by the advertising sign, signboard, board or other material containing advertising matter authorized by subsection 1 to meet its obligations to the State of Nevada as set forth in the financing agreement and bond indenture, including, without limitation, the payment of operations and maintenance obligations, the funding of reserves and the payment of debt service. To the extent that any surplus revenue remains after the payment of all such obligations, the surplus revenue must be used solely to repay the bond until the bond is repaid.

      8.  As used in this section, “monorail station” means:

      (a) A structure for the loading and unloading of passengers from a monorail for which a franchise has been granted pursuant to NRS 705.695 or an agreement has been entered into pursuant to NRS 705.695; and

      (b) Any facilities or appurtenances within such a structure.

      [25:169:1917; A 1935, 68; 1931 NCL § 5348]—(NRS A 1967, 570; 1979, 1469, 1800; 1989, 996; 1999, 1259, 2047; 2001, 847; 2003, 3248; 2005, 2321; 2009, 867)

PROTECTION OF HIGHWAYS FROM DAMAGE BY WATER

      NRS 405.120  Installation of bridge or culvert if water conducted across highway; construction and repair performed according to specifications of county commissioners.

      1.  All persons, associations, firms or corporations conducting water across any public road or highway in this state, or across any street or alley in any unincorporated town of this state, for domestic, mining, agricultural or manufacturing purposes, are required to construct, repair and maintain, at their own expense, good and substantial culverts or bridges, as the case may be, over such crossings, and shall in no case allow any stream of water, diverted from its natural channel, to flood or wash any public road, or any street or alley in any unincorporated town of this state.

      2.  The construction and repairing of such bridge or culvert shall be performed according to a standard plan and specifications to be prescribed by the board of county commissioners of the county wherein the crossing is situated, and the work of construction or repairing shall be approved by the board.

      [1:64:1885; BH § 459; C § 443; RL § 3022; NCL § 5434] + [1:214:1913; 1919 RL p. 2906; NCL § 5428]

      NRS 405.130  Notice of violation by chair of county commissioners; repair by county if violator fails or refuses to repair.

      1.  The chair of the board of county commissioners shall notify at once the person or persons violating the provisions of NRS 405.120 to 405.160, inclusive, to make such construction or repair as may be necessary.

      2.  If such person or persons, firm, association or corporation shall refuse or neglect to make the same for a period of 5 days after receiving such notice, then the chair of the board of county commissioners shall:

      (a) Immediately cause the necessary construction or repairing to be made according to the standard plan and specifications.

      (b) Submit in duplicate to the board of county commissioners and the district attorney itemized bills for the expense so incurred.

      3.  The bills shall be allowed and paid as other bills against the road fund of the district in which the construction or repairing is made. If there is no money in the road fund, then the bills shall be allowed and paid out of any moneys in the county general fund not otherwise appropriated.

      [2:64:1885; BH § 460; C § 444; RL § 3023; NCL § 5436] + [2:214:1913; 1919 RL p. 2906; NCL § 5429]

      NRS 405.140  Recovery of expenses from violator by civil action.  Any person, association, firm or corporation owning, leasing, operating or controlling any flume, ditch, canal or any aqueduct conducting water across any public road or highway in this state, or across any street or alley in any unincorporated town in this state, for domestic, mining, agricultural or manufacturing purposes, shall be liable for the amount of the expenses incurred by the chair of the board of county commissioners in the construction or repairing of the bridge or culvert, to be recovered by a civil action.

      [3:214:1913; 1919 RL p. 2907; NCL § 5430]

      NRS 405.150  District attorney to commence action for recovery of expenses.  Upon receiving the bill of expense as provided in NRS 405.130, the district attorney shall immediately commence an action in any court of competent jurisdiction for the recovery of such an amount as is set forth in the itemized bill of expense together with the costs of the suit.

      [3:64:1885; BH § 461; C § 445; RL § 3024; NCL § 5437] + [4:214:1913; 1919 RL p. 2907; NCL § 5431]

      NRS 405.160  Disposition of money collected by civil action.  After paying the costs of suit, all moneys collected shall be returned and paid into the fund from which the original bill of expense named in NRS 405.130 shall have been allowed and paid by the board of county commissioners.

      [4:64:1885; BH § 462; C § 446; RL § 3025; NCL § 5438] + [5:214:1913; 1919 RL p. 2907; NCL § 5432]

      NRS 405.170  Penalty for failure to construct bridge or culvert.

      1.  All persons, corporations or associations conducting water across any public road or highway, or across any street or alley in any unincorporated town in this state, for domestic, mining, agricultural or manufacturing purposes shall construct, at their own expense, good and substantial culverts or bridges over such crossing, and shall in no case allow any stream of water, diverted from its natural channel for such purposes by them, to flood or wash any public road or any street or alley in any unincorporated town of this state.

      2.  Any person, corporation or association violating any of the provisions of subsection 1 shall be punished by a fine of not more than $500.

      [1:78:1911; A 1915, 373; 1919 RL § 3045; NCL § 5426] + [2:78:1911; A 1915, 373; 1919 RL § 3046; NCL § 5427]—(NRS A 1967, 570)

      NRS 405.180  Penalty for willfully or negligently allowing water to flow on highway; failure to act upon notice prima facie evidence of negligence.

      1.  If any person or persons being the owner or owners, superintendent or managing agent of any water ditch, flume or artificial watercourse within this state, or other person or corporation, shall willfully, maliciously, negligently or carelessly allow or let the water from the ditch, flume or artificial watercourse run or flow into or upon any public road, highway or common street or alley of any city or town within this state, so as to make such public road, highway, street or alley impassable or inconvenient to travel, or so as to injure the same, every person so offending shall be punished by a fine of not more than $500.

      2.  Whenever the water from any ditch, flume or artificial watercourse in this state shall run or flow into or upon any public road, highway, street or alley of any city or town of this state, and the road supervisor within whose road district such public road, highway, street or alley is situated, if there be one, or if there is no road supervisor, then any member of the board of county commissioners of the county within which such public road, highway, street or alley is situated, shall notify the owner or owners, superintendent or managing agent of such ditch, flume or artificial watercourse, that the water from the same is or has been flowing into or upon the public road, highway, street or alley, making the same impassable or inconvenient to travel or pass, or is injuring or has injured the same, and if the owner or owners, or superintendent or managing agent of the ditch, flume or artificial watercourse refuse or neglect for 5 days to repair the same and prevent the water from flowing into or upon the public road, highway, street or alley, it shall be prima facie evidence of negligence.

      [1911 C&P § 505; RL § 6770; NCL § 10452] + [1911 C&P § 506; RL § 6771; NCL § 10453]—(NRS A 1967, 570)

MAINTENANCE AND USE OF PUBLIC ROADS

      NRS 405.191  “Public road” defined; county roads and highways may be established on rights-of-way over certain public lands.  As used in NRS 405.193 and 405.195, “public road” includes:

      1.  A United States highway, a state highway or a main, general or minor county road and any other way laid out or maintained by any governmental agency.

      2.  Any way which exists upon a right-of-way granted by Congress over public lands of the United States not reserved for public uses in chapter 262, section 8, 14 Statutes 253 (former 43 U.S.C. § 932, commonly referred to as R.S. 2477), and accepted by general public use and enjoyment before, on or after July 1, 1979. Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, each board of county commissioners may locate and determine the width of such rights-of-way and locate, open for public use and establish thereon county roads or highways, but public use alone has been and is sufficient to evidence an acceptance of the grant of a public user right-of-way pursuant to former 43 U.S.C. § 932. In a county in which a board of county highway commissioners has exclusive control of all matters relating to the construction, repairing and maintaining of public highways, roads and bridges within the county pursuant to NRS 403.090, the board of county highway commissioners may locate and determine the width of those rights-of-way and open those rights-of-way for public use for the purpose of designating county roads pursuant to NRS 403.170 or taking any other action concerning those rights-of-way pursuant to chapter 403 of NRS.

      3.  Any way which is shown upon any plat, subdivision, addition, parcel map or record of survey of any county, city, town or portion thereof duly recorded or filed in the office of the county recorder, and which is not specifically therein designated as a private road or a nonpublic road, and any way which is described in a duly recorded conveyance as a public road or is reserved thereby for public road purposes or which is described by words of similar import.

      (Added to NRS by 1979, 1174; A 1981, 923; 1993, 1427; 1997, 1615; 2011, 300)

      NRS 405.193  Public agency not required to maintain or accept road made public by prescriptive use; immunity of county from liability arising from use of certain public roads.

      1.  No public agency is required to maintain any public road which is so designated only because it meets the requirements set forth in subsection 1 or 2 of NRS 405.191 nor is any public agency required to accept any public road as a main, general or minor county road.

      2.  No action may be brought against the county, its officers or employees for damage suffered by a person solely as a result of the unmaintained condition of a road made public pursuant to NRS 405.195.

      (Added to NRS by 1979, 1174; A 1993, 1428)

      NRS 405.195  Petition to open, reopen, close, relocate or abandon road; hearings and orders by board of county commissioners regarding petition; legal actions authorized.

      1.  Five or more residents of this state may petition any board of county commissioners to open, reopen, close, relocate or abandon a public road within the county. The petition must be accompanied by proof of the petitioners’ residency and adequate maps and documentation to justify a hearing on the petition. Upon receipt of such a petition and the required documentation, the board of county commissioners shall set a date to conduct a public hearing on the petition. The date selected must not be earlier than 30 days, nor later than 45 days, after the petition is submitted. In addition to any other notice required by law or ordinance, the board shall cause notice of the time, date and location of the hearing to be published at least once each week for 2 successive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county.

      2.  Upon conclusion of the public hearing, the board shall determine whether the road in question has acquired the status of a public road because:

      (a) Construction of the improvement occurred while the land was unappropriated, unreserved public land;

      (b) The improvement was constructed by mechanical means which made the physical change to the natural area necessary for the customary or usual passage of traffic; and

      (c) The right-of-way was:

             (1) Accepted by the state or local government for dedication as a road for public use and thereafter the road was used by the public at large; or

             (2) Accepted by use as access to a mining claim or other privately owned property.

      3.  If the board concludes that the road is a public road, the board may order the public road to be opened, reopened, closed, relocated or abandoned, for all or part of the year. The board’s decision must be based on specific findings, including, but not limited to:

      (a) The resulting benefit to the general public;

      (b) Whether any significant impairment of the environment or natural resources will result; and

      (c) Whether the decision will result in a significant reduction in the value of public or private property.

Ê The order of the board must be reduced to writing, including a statement of any actions which must be taken to effectuate the decision and the person to whom each such action has been assigned. If possible, the order must be signed by any person who has agreed to take a specific action to effectuate the board’s decision. The lack of such a signature does not invalidate the order.

      4.  If the order of the board is to close or abandon a public road, the board shall, upon the petition of five or more residents of the State, designate and provide an alternate route serving the same area. The closure or abandonment of a public road by the board does not prohibit or restrict the use of that road by a governmental agency or a public utility regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada for the maintenance, construction or operation of a facility of the agency or utility.

      5.  Any person or governmental agency may bring and maintain an action in the district court of the county in which the public road lies to prevent any person, including a public agency, from violating an order issued pursuant to subsection 3.

      6.  The Attorney General may bring and maintain an action in any court or before any federal agency if an agency or instrumentality of the Federal Government denies the use of a public road located on public land in this state.

      7.  Nothing in this section affects the right of the Department of Transportation to regulate freeways or highways in this state.

      (Added to NRS by 1979, 1174; A 1981, 923; 1993, 1428; 1997, 1993)

ACCESSORY ROADS

      NRS 405.201  Definitions.  As used in NRS 405.201 to 405.204, inclusive, unless the context otherwise requires:

      1.  “Accessory road” means any way established over public lands between 1866 and 1976 pursuant to section 8 of chapter 262, 14 Stat. 253 (1866), former 43 U.S.C. § 932, as to which general public use or enjoyment before 1976 is not established, but which provides access to privately owned land.

      2.  “Public utility” means any public utility, as that term is defined in NRS 704.020, that is subject to the jurisdiction of the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada.

      (Added to NRS by 1993, 1402; A 1997, 1995)

      NRS 405.202  Use and maintenance; fee prohibited; immunity of state and local governments from liability arising from use.

      1.  Wherever an accessory road crosses public land, the accessory road is open to:

      (a) Raisers of livestock in maintaining their herds;

      (b) Any public utility in maintaining, constructing or operating any of its facilities; and

      (c) The use of the general public.

      2.  The State and the respective local governments have no duty to maintain an accessory road and are immune from liability for damages suffered by any person as a result of using such a road.

      3.  Without obtaining a permit from any public agency, a private owner of land served by an accessory road or a raiser of livestock using such a road may maintain the road and remove debris or vegetation from it, but may not perform new construction. No public agency may charge a fee for the use or maintenance of an accessory road.

      (Added to NRS by 1993, 1402)

      NRS 405.203  Closure or restriction of use.

      1.  The State Forester Firewarden or the board of directors of a fire protection district may temporarily close or restrict the use of an accessory road when the danger of fire arising from use of the road so requires. The closure or restricted use may not restrict, impede or preclude the use of the road by a public utility in maintaining, constructing or operating any of its facilities.

      2.  A board of county commissioners may permanently close an accessory road in its county when the public safety or welfare so requires. Before permanently closing an accessory road, the board of county commissioners shall hold a public hearing. The board shall give written notice of the time and place of the hearing to each owner of land served by the road, and to each stock raiser known to use the road. The board shall also publish the notice in a newspaper of general circulation in the county for 3 successive weeks before the date set for the hearing.

      3.  Following the hearing, the board of county commissioners shall not close the road unless the benefit to public safety or welfare from its closing outweighs the detriment to owners of land served by the road, to raisers of livestock using the road and to the general public.

      4.  If the permanent closing of an accessory road deprives an owner of access by road to the owner’s land, the public agency closing the road shall pay the owner just compensation for the owner’s loss.

      (Added to NRS by 1993, 1403)

      NRS 405.204  Legislative findings and declaration; action by Attorney General authorized.

      1.  The Legislature hereby finds and declares that the public interest of the State of Nevada is served by keeping accessory roads open and available for use by the residents of this state because:

      (a) There exists within this state a large number of accessory roads;

      (b) Accessory roads provide access for the control of fire on adjacent lands, the enforcement of laws by peace officers, search and rescue operations, medical personnel and ambulances, and public utilities;

      (c) Accessory roads provide access to public lands for members of the general public; and

      (d) Accessory roads enhance the taxable value of the private property served by such roads.

      2.  The Legislature therefore directs that, if an agency of the United States responsible for the lands over which an accessory road runs pursues the closing of an accessory road or demands a fee or permit for the use of an accessory road, the Attorney General may bring an action for a declaratory judgment as soon as practicable on behalf of:

      (a) The State and its residents;

      (b) Owners of lands served by the road;

      (c) Holders of grazing rights served by the road; and

      (d) All other users of the road,

Ê to vindicate the rights of all users to the unimpeded maintenance, use and enjoyment of the road, and the rights of owners of lands served by the road to just compensation for any closing found necessary.

      (Added to NRS by 1993, 1403)

MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

      NRS 405.205  Erection and maintenance of power lines by rural electric cooperative.  A rural electric cooperative which has been formed pursuant to NRS 81.410 to 81.540, inclusive, may erect or bury, and thereafter maintain or operate, power lines, and may permit the maintenance and operation of telephone lines in connection therewith, along public highways, roads, streets and alleys within the area which it holds a certificate of public convenience and necessity to serve. In exercising this right, the cooperative shall not obstruct the natural and proper use of the highway, road, street or alley, and is subject to the requirements of NRS 408.423.

      (Added to NRS by 1979, 957)

      NRS 405.210  Damage to public or private road, bridge or guidepost unlawful; penalty.  Every person who shall willfully and maliciously remove, damage or destroy:

      1.  A highway or a private way laid out by authority of law, or a bridge upon such public or private road, or willfully or maliciously cause to be placed thereon any substance or thing dangerous to any person or animal traveling thereon or which might injure or puncture the tire of any vehicle; or

      2.  A mile board, milestone or guidepost erected upon a highway, or any inscription thereon,

Ê shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

      [Part 1911 C&P § 487; RL § 6752; NCL § 10434]

      NRS 405.230  Penalty for obstruction or damage to highway; abatement of nuisance; removal of certain obstacles or encroachments.

      1.  Any person who, in any manner, obstructs any road, street or alley, or in any manner damages it or prevents travel thereon, or who obstructs, dams or diverts any stream or water so as to throw it, or cause the flowage thereof, upon, across or along the pathway of any road, highway, street or alley is guilty of a public offense, as prescribed in NRS 193.155, proportionate to the extent of damage to the section of the road, street, alley or highway damaged, and in no event less than a misdemeanor.

      2.  The court before which the conviction is had shall order the sheriff or any constable of the county to abate, as a nuisance, any fence or other obstruction, to the free and convenient use and travel of the road, street or alley, or any obstruction from the stream so as to allow it to flow in its natural bed.

      3.  The department of public works or any other appropriate county agency is authorized to remove from the highways any unlicensed obstacle or encroachment which is not removed, or the removal of which is not commenced and thereafter diligently prosecuted, before the expiration of 5 days after personal service of notice and demand upon the owner of the obstacle or encroachment or the owner’s agent. In lieu of personal service upon that person or the person’s agent, service of the notice may also be made by registered or certified mail and by posting, for a period of 5 days, a copy of the notice on the obstacle or encroachment described in the notice. Removal by the department or other agency of the obstacle or encroachment on the failure of the owner to comply with the notice and demand gives the department or other agency a right of action to recover the expense of the removal, investigative costs, attorney’s fees, cost and expenses of suit, and in addition thereto the sum of $250 for each day the obstacle or encroachment remains after the expiration of 5 days from the service of the notice and demand.

      4.  As used in this section, “obstacles or encroachments” mean any objects, materials or facilities not owned by the county that are placed within a right-of-way of the county for storage purposes or decorative improvements for front lots that are not a part of a highway facility. The term does not include vehicles parked in a lawful manner within that right-of-way.

      [6:111:1866; BH § 445; C § 452; RL § 3009; NCL § 5397]—(NRS A 1967, 571; 1979, 602; 1993, 897)

      NRS 405.240  Repair of damage to highway from driving livestock.  Any person or corporation driving sheep, goats, swine, horses or cattle along or across any public road or highway, or along or across any street or alley in any unincorporated town, in this state for any purpose whatever, who by so doing damages or impairs the public road or highway or street or alley, as the case may be, shall be required, at his, her or its own expense, to make any and all repairs necessary to put the road, highway, street or alley in as good condition as it was before the damage was done.

      [1a:64:1885; added 1913, 238; 1919 RL p. 2897; NCL § 5435]

      NRS 405.250  Construction and maintenance of sidewalks; penalty for riding or driving on sidewalk.

      1.  Subject to the authority conferred by law on city authorities, the boards of county commissioners or road supervisors, any owner or occupant of land may construct and maintain a sidewalk in the highway along the line of the owner’s or occupant’s land.

      2.  Sidewalks already constructed and laid out with reasonable limits as to width so as not to operate as an obstruction to the street or highway must be maintained and protected pursuant to this section.

      3.  Except as otherwise provided in NRS 484B.767, a person who willfully and intentionally rides or drives, or causes to be ridden or driven, any animal, vehicle or other thing over or upon such a sidewalk, without permission of the owner or occupant, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $20, in addition to the costs of prosecution.

      [1911 C&P § 508; RL § 6773; NCL § 10455]—(NRS A 1967, 572; 1997, 1728)

      NRS 405.270  Standards of safety for electronic gates that provide access for vehicular traffic.  A gate that:

      1.  Operates by electrical power;

      2.  Provides access for vehicular traffic; and

      3.  Is installed on or after March 1, 2000,

Ê must comply with the requirements of the Underwriters Laboratories Inc. Standard for Safety 325, as published on September 18, 1998, and effective on March 1, 2000.

      (Added to NRS by 1999, 3112)