June 26, 2017 - Every year there are approximately 150 emergency department visits due to ATV injuries in the Thunder Bay District. In 2015, half of those injuries involved persons between the age of 10 and 29. Although legislation has been implemented in some areas of Canada, ATV-related incidents continue to be a significant cause of injury. During the summer months, the Health Unit and SAVE committee reminds outdoor enthusiasts to stay safe on their ATVs (all-terrain vehicles) and ORVs (off-road vehicles).
“In 2015, Emergency department visits for ATV injures were 2 times higher for the Thunder Bay District compared to the rest of Ontario,” says Rachel McKay, public health nurse. “This is a really important issue for us as it is a popular activity for many people in our region.”
The Thunder Bay District Health Unit is asking the public to help us reduce the number of injuries this summer by remembering to:
- Always wear an approved helmet and other safety gear.
- Never carry a passenger on a single rider ATV.
- Get trained before you ride.
- Never ride while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Supervise riders younger than 16.
- Follow the designated speed limits.
Another thing to consider is the whether your ATVs/ORVs can travel along a certain provincial highway or municipal roads. Some municipalities have by-laws in place permitting on-road ATV/ORVs, so be sure to check out your local requirements.
For more information on ATV/ORV safety, legal requirements and where to ride, visit www.ontario.ca/atv and www.e-laws.gov.on.ca
The Thunder Bay District Health Unit and the SAVE committee want to remind the public to stay safe this summer when operating ATVs. Snowmobile, ATV, vessel, education (SAVE) committee is a coalition that works to promote awareness, education and enforcement of safe ATVing, boating and snowmobiling through Northwestern Ontario.