All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are a fun and exhilarating addition to any long weekend or trip to the cottage in the summer. Since they are usually not viewed in the same manner as road vehicles; it’s easy to overlook the safety issues associated with a weekend of fun. Not only is it important to make sure you have the right ATV insurance protection but also that you are prepared for all the risks involved. Here we have a few simple tips on ways to keep you and your friends safe this summer while still having plenty of fun.
Always ride an ATV suited to your size and ability.
As relatively small machines, ATVs can still cause quite a bit of damage if you lose control. For this reason, you should always make sure you and your loved ones are able to control your ride. Giving your 10-year-old a 250cc engine to ride might seem like fun to him, but really, it’s far too big and potentially dangerous.
Before riding an ATV, make sure you know how it works.
Much like each model of car has slightly different controls, so does each ATV. Take the time to learn the controls before you head out on the trail and it could save your life in an emergency.
Do a safety check.
Since there is often an extended period of time between rides, it is highly advisable to take a tour of your ATV before setting off. Check the tires, gas level and body for any damage that may interfere with your ride. Before you head out run the engine a bit and make sure everything is in tip-top shape.
Wear protection.Wearing safety gear doesn’t always look stylish but it’s better than ending up in a bad accident.
Make sure you understand the safety precautions before you head out. If you are not wearing a helmet, the chance of suffering from a head injury when an accident occurs increases dramatically! Wear a helmet, gloves, glasses, and boots – the whole works. Protect that pretty face of yours!
Ride with friends and follow the trails.
In the unfortunate event that something does happen to you while riding it’s better to have a buddy or two around to help you out. To avoid getting in trouble, try to follow designated trails. You’ll be more likely to find navigable terrain, free from unexpected problems. If you are a minor, make sure you are riding under adult supervision. Make sure someone is always there to help in case anything goes wrong.
Always ride safely.
Riding safely means no using of substances before riding and no showing off. Cottages and long weekends are almost always synonymous with alcohol. Just as you wouldn’t get behind the wheel of a car after drinking, you should also stay off of ATVs. Same goes for unnecessary stunts, you won’t look so cool if you end up in the hospital or on crutches for weeks. Before riding an ATV make sure that you are able to handle the power and if you don’t feel confident find an alternative.
These tips may seem obvious but far too many people get injured every year by not following them. Safety on an ATV should be a top priority but even with all the precautions, accidents can still happen. This is why having proper insurance is just as important as playing it safe.
Learn how MMI Insurance can save you money on ATV Insurance this season.
Note: ATV’s fall under the ‘Off Road Vehicles Act’ and must, by law, be insured under an Automobile Policy.