As temperatures are warming up, many people are heading off the road to enjoy the weather.
However after the tragic UTV accident on Memorial Day, everyone is reminded to be cautious when operating off road vehicles.
Fontaine Glenn was live from the newsroom this morning with more.
For many, riding a side-by-side or four wheeler is a fun time to unwind and enjoy being outside, but it’s important to remember to be safe.
“They are a lot of fun but can be very dangerous,” said Joe Askins, Vice President, Off Road Express.
Off road vehicles like ATVs and side-by-sides are used for utility and for the mud, especially in the summer months.
Though fun to ride — safety measures are in place for a reason.
“A lot of them won’t get up to speed unless the seatbelts fastened. They have roll cages, they have doors on them. The intent of the doors is mainly if you were involved in a rollover to keep your legs in, because typically it’s the weight of the side-by-sides and ATVs where injuries occur,” said Askins.
When driving off road, prepare for the unexpected.
“Whether it’s a downed tree or a stump, there’s reasons that they have gear like helmets, goggles, boots, gloves — that’s all for the riders protection,” said Askins.
Before starting your engine, make sure to click your seat belt, grab your helmet and you’re ready to ride.
“We just ask everyone to be careful. Make sure you guys are taking the safety precautions, wearing a seatbelt, not driving recklessly, so you can get back home safely,” said Trooper Cindy Schick, Community Service Officer, Troop E. Meadville.
The same laws for drinking and driving apply to off road riders.
“These individuals are riding on the roadway and they happen to crash or get stopped and they’re under the influence, it’s just like a motor vehicle where you can be taken into custody and arrested for that DUI,” said Trooper Schick.
Trooper Schick says off road riders can drive on the roads, but those roads have to be marked as such and the vehicle has to be properly registered and insured.