Since 2001, legislation was enacted to regulate the use of vehicles in the coastal zone. Generally, no recreational beach driving is permitted on South African beaches. However a permit to use a vehicle may be issued by the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) under specific circumstances, such as sport fishing competitions or a physically challenged person requiring vehicle access.
An application for the appropriate permit must be made to the DFFE. Persons with a disability must also provide a letter from the "National Council for Persons with Physical Disabilities", certifying their disability.
An organ of state is permitted to use a vehicle in the coastal zone without a permit for its public duties and the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) or Lifesaving South Africa may do so in the interest of public safety.
Persons launching boats can access officially registered launch areas under the regulations governing these sites.
In order to protect environmentally sensitive areas, regulations were put in place to enforce, control and limit the use of vehicles in the coastal zone. There is an application process and the application fee is paid in favour of the Marine Living Resources Fund.