Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 33.2. Highways and Other Surface Transportation Systems
Chapter 2. Transportation Entities

§ 33.2-264. Livestock on right-of-way of the systems of state highways.

No person, firm, or corporation shall pasture or graze, or cause to be pastured or grazed, or otherwise permit to be on any right-of-way of any highway in the systems of state highways, except as otherwise provided in this section, any livestock, unless such animal or animals be securely tied or held by chain or rope so as to prevent such animal from getting on the traveled portion of the highway, provided that this section shall not apply when such livestock are being driven along such highway while under the control of a responsible drover or drovers.

Nothing in this section shall prevent the owners of abutting parcels of land from grazing livestock unsecured by chain or rope on secondary roads that (i) have been taken into the system as gated roads and (ii) carry fewer than 50 vehicles per day.

On gated roads carrying 50 or more vehicles per day, the Department shall, upon the request of the local governing body and upon the recordation of a deed of gift or donation by such landowner of not less than a 40-foot right-of-way, reimburse abutting landowners a sum equal to $1 per foot of fencing that must be installed to keep cattle from entering the right-of-way from such abutting land. Where such fencing separates pasture land from a water source used by the owner of such pasture land to water his livestock, the Department shall construct or have constructed a means of access by which stock may reach the water source from the pasture land. Moneys for such fencing and construction of access to water shall be taken from highway construction funds. For purposes of this section, a "gated" road is a road on which, prior to July 1, 1986, abutting landowners have maintained a gate or cattle guard.

Any person, firm, or corporation who violates any of the provisions of this article shall be fined not less than $10 nor more than $50 for such offense.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to transfer the liability for injuries or property damage caused by such grazing livestock.

Code 1950, § 33-125; 1956, c. 221; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-210; 1986, c. 367; 2014, c. 805.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.