Why do Dune Buggies Have Flags on Top?

dune buggies with flags in the dunes

If you have been to the dunes then you might be wondering why dune buggies have flags on top of them. In fact, all the vehicles in the dunes have flags on top, and you just might be surprised at why. 

Dune buggies have flags because they are required to by law. The flags are a safety measure for all recreational vehicles in the dunes. Orange or red flags must be mounted on a long pole on top of dune buggies to increase visibility in the dunes and prevent accidents. 

It is important to understand and follow all the safety rules of the dunes, including having a sand flag, because it can keep you safe and help to keep others safe too. Here is more information about sand flags on the top of dune buggies. 

Dune Flag Requirements

On all public sand dune recreation areas there are set rules for dune flags on buggies. Generally the flags are required to be 8”x12” in size, and solid red or orange in color. They must be attached to a whip (which is a pole, rod or antenna) that is securely mounted on the dune buggy. The dune flag must stand upright when the buggy is stopped and be at least 9-feet above the ground. 

Not Just for Dune Buggies

The flags that you see on top of dune buggies and sand rails are also required for any off road vehicle that is driving on the dunes. This means all side-by-sides, dirt bikes, ATV’s, UTV’s and vehicles. Displaying a dune flag is enforced within all dune areas and if you don’t have one on your buggy or vehicle you can be ticketed, forced to pay fines, or asked to leave. 

Dune Flag Safety 

There are a few different ways that dune flags help to avoid accidents in the dunes. Since there are so many large hills it can be hard to see if someone is on the other side. The dune flags are so tall they are designed to make you more visible when coming to the top of a dune, as well as helping you to spot someone else cresting a dune. 

When you are riding in a group the flags can also be helpful to keep track of everyone. You can watch the flags of people driving in front of you to be warned of changing terrain. If someone is lost or broken down in the dunes, having a flag also makes them easier to find. 

Flags simply help you see other riders in the dunes, and help them to see you. You don’t want to go over a hill and land on or run into another driver, just as you don’t want to be hit. A flag on your dune buggy or vehicle helps to keep you safe in the dunes. 

Light Up Flags

Many dune riding recreation areas allow people to ride at night as long as they have headlights and taillights. While not required, a popular type of dune flag for night riding is the light up flag. These flags are mounted on a clear pole and have led lights in them that turn on or flash at night. 

They have become really popular in recent years as they look really cool at night and they help to make you more visible and safer when you are riding in the dark. 

Buying Dune Buggy Flags

When choosing your dune buggy or flag just make sure that it meets the safety requirements set by the specific park or recreation area that you will be visiting. Dune flags are available from many off-roading websites and Amazon. 

Don’t worry if you don’t have time to purchase your flag before your trip to the dunes. Most motorsports stores near any large dune area will have plenty of flags to choose from.