Do you know about trail etiquette?

Monday, July 13, 2015

Ontario Trails News - our condolences to all those involved.


Parents - stop these tragedies.

Only you can supervise your kids.

Only you can train or buy the right equipment.

Get training in riding, follow safe riding rules.

If you can't do these things don't let your children near these machines.
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Boy on life support after ATV driven by six-year-old crashes


It was a recipe for disaster: Five children under the age of 10, without helmets or safety gear, riding on an adult-sized all-terrain vehicle driven by a six-year-old girl.
A nine-year-old boy was clinging to life Tuesday after he was thrown from the 500cc machine during a family gathering at a rural home in Elgin County the night before, police said.
Police are investigating how the children — the youngest was two — came to be aboard the vehicle Monday night at about 8:30 p.m. while adults were on the other side of a home in Malahide Township.
“We’ve got five children — a six-year-old operating a very large ATV, with a two-year-old, a four-year-old and two nine-year-olds,” Elgin OPP Const. Troy Carlson said Tuesday. “Were they being supervised? How did they come about operating the ATV?”
Investigators are trying to determine if adults knew the children were on the ATV and who owns the vehicle, he said.
“You’ve got a six-year-old girl, that obviously had no intention of doing this. We are talking about a 500cc machine, and that would be a handful for a lot of adults,” he said. “Having a two-year-old on there?”
The little girl was trying to turn a corner when she accidentally pressed the throttle, “lost control and collided with two pine trees,” police said.
The nine-year-old struck a tree and became trapped between the ATV and one of the trees. He was freed by adults who heard the collision.
The boy was flown by air ambulance to hospital, where he was on life support and listed in critical condition Tuesday.
The crash came less than a week after Ontario changed the rules to allow more off-roading vehicles and all-terrain vehicles to use the shoulder of public roads while mandating all riders wear a helmet and use a seat-belt or foot rests.
Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act doesn’t apply because the crash happened on private property, police said.
In a news release, OPP Insp. Brad Fishleigh said the case was a “great cause for concern” for investigators.
“This is a very tragic example of the dangers of ATVs. ATVs are powerful vehicles, not toys for children. ATVs must be operated by trained and skilled operators,” he said. “The lack of safety gear (helmets) and the fact that there were five children on board ranging from ages two to nine is a great cause for concern.”
As of the middle of June, the OPP had investigated nine off-road vehicle deaths in Ontario.
But though the head of the Canada Safety Council called the circumstances shocking, he pointed out it is all too common for kids to be driving ATVs.
“That’s a sad story and it’s shocking that this goes on,” Raynald Marchand said. “Five on an ATV is definitely unusual, but it’s not unusual to find children using adult ATVs and hurting themselves.”
Under the Highway Traffic Act, ATV drivers in Ontario must be at least 12 years old to drive without adult supervision. But Marchand pointed out manufacturers of 500cc vehicles recommend no one under 16 years of age operate the machines.
“It’s a bad idea. Kids shouldn’t be allowed to ride any ATV unsupervised. Things happen very quickly with youngsters when they’re not being supervised. Definitely they should not be allowed to ride it period,” Marchand said. “This could’ve have been a story about a backyard pool drowning. There is a lack of supervision.”
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ATVS IN ONTARIO
  • The driver must be at least 12 years of age unless they are under the direct supervision of an adult.
  • The driver must carry the ATV/ORV’s registration permit or a true copy.
  • The driver and all passengers must wear an approved motorcycle helmet that is securely fastened under the chin with a chin strap.
  • The driver can directly cross a highway where permitted, if they are at least 16 years old and hold a valid driver’s licence.
THE NUMBERS
ONTARIO OFF-ROAD VEHICLE DEATHS
*2012 - 19
2011 - 18
2010 - 19
2009 - 24
2008 - 20
(* latest year available)
ONTARIO OFF-ROAD VEHICLE INJURIES
2012 - 410
2011 - 409
2010 - 416
2009 - 452
2008 - 398
Source: Ontario Road Safety Annual Report