Traction and Chains Requirement Descriptions

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Ice & Snow Take It SlowNevada chain requirements vary from chain requirements in other states.

Below, you will find Nevada traction device requirement definitions, as well as a comparison of Nevada and California chain requirements.

Nevada Traction Device Requirements

Conditions /traction devices NEVADA REQUIREMENTS
CALIFORNIA REQUIREMENTS
Chains Required, Except For
Nevada does not use this condition..
Cars and light trucks < 6,000 GVW must have mud-snow (M-S) tires on driving wheels. Motorists are advised to carry chains. Vehicles > 6,000 GVW must use chains on drive wheels. (R-1)
Chains or Snow Tires Required
Vehicles < 10,000 GVW are required to use snow tires or approved traction devices. Vehicles > 10,000 GVW must use chains on driving wheels and braking wheels of trailer. Four-wheel-drive OK with four mud-snow (M-S) tires. NAC 484.240 (1)
Chains required on all vehicles, except four-wheel-drives or all-wheel-drives with snow tread tires on all four wheels. All-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive vehicles must carry chains. (R-2)
Chains Mandatory
Chains required on all vehicles, except four-wheel-drive with four mud-snow (M-S) tires. NAC 484.240 (2) 

Chains required on ALL VEHICLES without exception. (R-3)

Definition of “Snow Tires” (both states): Special tread for greater traction on slippery surface and have a sidewall marking (M-S, M/S, international symbols) indicating that it is an approved all-weather tire. At least 3/16" of tread depth.

Definition of “Approved Traction Devices” (Chains and alternative traction devices): Made of steel or plastic; have cross ribs with at least one link under tire tread while in motion; connecting rings on both sides of tire.

“Alternative Traction Devices”: Nevada recently approved use of alternative traction devices consisting of durable traction-enhancing fabric or plastic encompassing the circumference of a tire tread and secured to both sides of the wheel.

These traction devices are manufactured and made of synthetic materials which includes fabrics or plastics and have a composition and design capable of improving vehicle traction, braking and cornering ability upon snow, ice-covered or slippery surfaces. Alternative traction devices shall be constructed and assembled to provide sufficient structural integrity to prevent accidental detachment from vehicles and at the time of manufacture or final assembly, shall bear a permanent impression indicating the name, initials or trademark of the assembling company or primary manufacturer, and the country in which the devices were manufactured or assembled in final form.

Traction Requirements on Certain Tahoe Roads

Certain Tahoe-area highways now require any vehicle traveling without tire chains during winter chain restrictions to be four-wheel or all-wheel drive with snow tires.

A traction requirement sign notification on a Tahoe highway

All vehicle types with chain or snow tires were previously allowed during chain requirements. Under the new requirement, only four-wheel or all-wheel vehicles with snow tires and all vehicles with approved tire chains will be allowed when chain requirements are in place on the following state roads:

  • State Route 431 (Mt. Rose Highway)
  • State Route 207 (Kingsbury Grade)
  • U.S. 50- between Glenbrook and Carson City

Tire and chain requirements will not change on other highway corridors. Learn more information about the updated requirements from the news release on the NDOT website.

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