The weather is warming-up and everyone is ready for some exploring and fun! One of the most popular activities in our area is ATV and UTV riding! Whether you like to ride a razor, 4-wheeler, or dirt bike, there are plenty of beautiful spaces to enjoy nearby. BUT this activity can also be dangerous if drivers are not careful or prepared.
Our emergency department has seen many accidents and injuries come through the door related to outdoor recreation and we never like to see our community neighbors suffer or get hurt. Please remember a few key tips while enjoying your summer adventures that can make a difference in protecting yourself, family and friends.
First, preparation is the key to success and fun! Make sure you have done a good check of your ride before each outing, including tires, oil, and fuel. Be sure to bring supplies including water, food, and tools including tow rope for fixes if needed. It’s also important to check the weather before you head out for the day and bring the right gear for conditions. This should include helmets and other important gear such as goggles/glasses, scarves, jackets, gloves, and shoes. This will make the ride more comfortable and protect you from the weather elements that can change at any given time in the spring. You should also be sure to review the trails or area you plan to ride and let someone know where you are going and how long you plan to be gone. Getting lost or stranded in the wilderness can be a very dangerous predicament, even in the spring or summer.
Second, safety should be a priority! Do not drive vehicles under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This slows your response time posing a danger and it’s illegal to be intoxicated when driving! Do not ride on paved roads unless you have a driver’s license and your vehicle has registered plates, liability insurance, and is equipped with other lights and safety features required by Idaho law. Riders under the age of 16 should be supervised. And be sure that the vehicle you or your kids are riding is also age and size appropriate. This is important to be able to handle the vehicle safely. You should also never carry more passengers than what your vehicle is designed or specified for.
And lastly, respect our great outdoors! We all love the beauty of our Idaho spaces, and we all have an obligation to respect it. Remember to adhere to signage you see while riding. This includes not trespassing on private property. It also includes adhering to safe speeds and designated trails where posted. And most importantly we should all do our part to clean-up after ourselves and bring out any trash we take in. We all want to enjoy the beauty of our outdoors and so it takes all of us to keep it clean and beautiful!
We wish you all many safe and fun adventures to come!