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​All-terrain vehicle safety week is June 8-15: Great Info from the MN DNR

by Scott Hanson

All-terrain vehicle safety week is June 8-15

Gov. Mark Dayton has proclaimed June 8-15 as all-terrain vehicle (ATV) safety week in Minnesota.

More than 600,000 ATVs are used in Minnesota by men, women and children for outdoor recreation and to support their daily livelihood. State law requires anyone born after July 1, 1987, to have a certificate showing they have taken safety training if they are 11 or older and want to ride on public land, trails, and frozen waters. The course also is available for adults.

In the last 5 years, 83 Minnesotans have lost their lives in ATV accidents.

People who have taken ATV safety training are involved in fewer accidents compared to folks who havent had the training, said Lt. Leland Owens, recreational vehicle coordinator, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Enforcement Division. That's why we encourage ATV safety training for all ages.

The DNR promotes safety when operating an ATV:

  • Always wear protective gear, (helmet, eye protection, long sleeve shirt, gloves, long pants, boots).
  • Slow down. Speed is a major contributing factor in most ATV injury and fatal accidents.
  • If driving/riding in a side-by-side ATV, buckle up, and keep all body parts inside the side- by-side.
  • Be sober. Run an ATV under the influence of alcohol or narcotics and you could be charged with a misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or felony level DWI.
  • ATVs are not babysitters, parents need to make sure their kids take an ATV safety education course and supervise them always.
  • Dont take riding ATVs lightly. Think safety when riding ATVs. For more information on ATV safety training go to: www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/vehicle/atv/index.html .