Skip to code content (skip section selection)
(a) The following requirements govern as to brake equipment on vehicles:
(1) Every motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle, when operated upon a highway shall be equipped with brakes adequate to control the movement of and to stop and hold the motor vehicle, including two separate means of applying the brakes, each of which means shall be effective to apply the brakes to at least two wheels. If these two separate means of applying the brakes are connected in any way, then on those motor vehicles, manufactured or assembled after January 1, 1942, they shall be so constructed that failure of any one part of the operating mechanism shall not leave the motor vehicle without brakes on at least two wheels.
(2) Every motorcycle, when operated upon a highway shall be equipped with at least one adequate brake, which may be operated by hand or by foot.
(3) Every motorized bicycle shall be equipped with brakes meeting the rules adopted by the Director of Public Safety under R.C. § 4511.521.
(4) When operated upon the highways, the following vehicles shall be equipped with brakes adequate to control the movement of and to stop and to hold the vehicle, designed to be applied by the driver of the towing motor vehicle from its cab, and also designed and connected so that, in case of a breakaway of the towed vehicle, the brakes shall be automatically applied:
A. Except as otherwise provided in this section, every trailer or semitrailer, except a pole trailer, with an empty weight of 2,000 pounds or more, manufactured or assembled on or after January 1, 1942;
B. Every manufactured home or travel trailer with an empty weight of 2,000 pounds or more, manufactured or assembled on or after January 1, 2001.
(5) Every watercraft trailer with a gross weight or manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of 3,000 pounds or more that is manufactured or assembled on or after January 1, 2008, shall have separate brakes equipped with hydraulic surge or electrically operated brakes on two wheels.
(6) In any combination of motor-drawn trailers or semitrailers equipped with brakes, means shall be provided for applying the rearmost brakes in approximate synchronism with the brakes on the towing vehicle, and developing the required braking effort on the rearmost wheels at the fastest rate; or means shall be provided for applying braking effort first on the rearmost brakes; or both of the above means, capable of being used alternatively, may be employed.
(7) Every vehicle and combination of vehicles, except motorcycles and motorized bicycles, and except trailers and semitrailers of a gross weight of less than 2,000 pounds, and pole trailers, shall be equipped with parking brakes adequate to hold the vehicle on any grade on which it is operated, under all conditions of loading, on a surface free from snow, ice or loose material. The parking brakes shall be capable of being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements by the driver’s muscular effort or by spring action or by equivalent means. Their operation may be assisted by the service brakes or other source of power provided that failure of the service brake actuation system or other power assisting mechanism will not prevent the parking brakes from being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements. The parking brakes shall be so designed that when once applied they shall remain applied with the required effectiveness despite exhaustion of any source of energy or leakage of any kind.
(8) The same brake drums, brake shoes and lining assemblies, brake shoe anchors, and mechanical brake shoe actuation mechanism normally associated with the wheel brake assemblies may be used for both the service brakes and the parking brakes. If the means of applying the parking brakes and the service brakes are connected in any way, they shall be so constructed that failure of any one part shall not leave the vehicle without operative brakes.
(9) Every motor vehicle or combination of motor-drawn vehicles shall, at all times and under all conditions of loading, be capable of being stopped on a dry, smooth, level road free from loose material, upon application of the service or foot brake, within the following specified distances, or shall be capable of being decelerated at a sustained rate corresponding to these distances:
A. Vehicles or combinations of vehicles having brakes on all wheels shall come to a stop in 30 feet or less from a speed of 20 miles per hour.
B. Vehicles or combinations of vehicles not having brakes on all wheels shall come to a stop in 40 feet or less from a speed of 20 miles per hour.
(10) All brakes shall be maintained in good working order and shall be so adjusted as to operate as equally as practicable with respect to the wheels on opposite sides of the vehicle.
(R.C. § 4513.20)
(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.
(R.C. § 4513.99)