With the summer almost here many of us are not only heading out on our boats, but finding other outdoor activities to enjoy the summer. Many of us enjoy taking our ATVs out and hitting some trails. This can of course be a lot of fun, but you always need to remember to be safe. Here are some great safety tips from ATVSafety.gov.
- Take a hands-on safety training course
- Always wear protective gear when riding ATVs-Many ATV injuries are head injuries. Wearing a helmet may reduce the severity of these injuries. Select a motorcycle or other motorized sports helmet and make sure the helmet is certified by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and/or the Snell Memorial Foundation.
- Do not drive ATVs with a passenger or ride as a passenger- The majority of ATVs are designed to carry only one person. ATVs are designed for interactive riding – drivers must be able to shift their weight freely in all directions, depending on the situation and terrain.
- Do not drive ATVs on paved roads
- Do not permit children to drive or ride adult ATVs-Children are involved in about one-third of all ATV-related deaths and hospital emergency room injuries. Most of these deaths and injuries occur when a child is driving or riding on an adult ATV.
- Do not drive ATVs whole under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- All ATVs must be registered except those used only on the owner’s private property. Registration is to be renewed every two years.
- All operators using their ATVs on public lands must possess a safety training certificate from the Environmental Protection Commissioner.
- ATV riders under age 18 must have completed a safety education course.
- Youth ATVs may not be operated after dark.
- No one may drive an ATV on paved roads and highways, except a licensed operator may cross these roads at a 90 degree angle only.
- No one under 12 may operate an ATV on state-owned land.
- Persons 12 to15 may not operate an ATV unless they have a safety training certificate and are under the direct supervision of an adult over 18 who has completed a safety training course.
Let’s not forget to make sure you have your ATV covered by insurance as most specialized vehicles are not covered under your standard auto or home insurance.
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