After a deadly start to the snowmobiling season, Ontario Provisional Police (OPP) and the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) reminded riders of key safety tips during Snowmobile Safety Week, Jan. 21-29.
According to OPP, there have been seven snowmobiling fatalities since the start of the season, three of which involved snowmobiles falling through ice on waterways.
OPP stated that the high number of snowmobile deaths so far this season is concerning, noting that there have been too many instances of snowmobilers riding on unsafe ice and on OFSC trails that are closed.
Both OPP and the OFSC are committed to ensuring the safety of snowmobilers throughout the province and have worked together for the last several years to put together Snowmobile Safety Week to promote safe snowmobiling and to reduce fatalities.
They recommend that snowmobilers follow these safety tips when out on the trails:
- Stay on the trail – The safest way to ride is on open OFSC trails. It is both dangerous and illegal to ride on closed trails.
- Choose the right conditions – Make smart decisions about if, when and where you should ride based on the weather conditions and how they will affect safety and visibility while on the trails. Riders can check trail conditions on the OFSC Interactive Trail Guide.
- Spread out – Just like when driving an automobile, spread out to ensure a safe distance between your snowmobile and others.
- Keep right – Similar to driving on a highway, snowmobilers should ride on the right side of the trail to reduce chances of a collision.
- Use hand signals – Use the recommended hand signals to alert other snowmobilers to let them know if you are turning, slowing down or stopping. Signals can also warn of other hazards or snowmobilers.
- Be vigilant – Always be aware of your surroundings and assess your position and next moves ahead of time. Sharp reactions, good judgement and smart choices are keys to safe snowmobiling.
- Be prepared – Always have a plan before setting out and let others know where you will be riding. Plan ahead by always carrying an emergency survival kit, a reliable form of communication, spare parts, a tow rope and a personal tracking unit.
If you are injured in a snowmobiling accident because of another’s negligent actions, our Windsor auto accident lawyers will be able to advise you of your legal options. Contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation.