Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Snowmobilers Should Ride Smart

New York State Park Police and State Police are reminding all snowmobile riders to make safety their priority in an effort to reduce the number of personal injury and fatal accidents throughout the State of New York.

Everyone operating a snowmobile should be familiar with safe riding practices and all applicable laws, rules, and regulations. The best way to learn is by taking a snowmobile safety course, which can be found online. A safety certificate is required for youth between ages 10 and 18.

Recommendations for safe riding include:

  • Prior to starting your ride, check over the snowmobile to make sure it is in good working order and carry emergency supplies.
  • Always wear a helmet and make sure to wear the proper snowmobile gear including bibs, jackets, boots, and gloves.
  • Always ride with a buddy or at least one other person.
  • Ride responsibly and within your abilities.
  • Always ride to the right side of the trail especially at hill crests and curves.
  • Operate at a speed which is safe and prudent for the given conditions.
  • Respect landowners, obey posted signs, and stay on the marked trail.
  • Frozen bodies of water are not designated trails. If planning to ride on ice, proceed with caution and be aware of potential hazards under the snow. Consider wearing a snowmobile suit with flotation built-in and carry a set of ice picks as a precaution.
  • Never drink alcohol or use drugs and ride.

The Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) oversees the development, maintenance and oversight of a statewide snowmobile program, which includes approximately 10,400 miles of state-designated snowmobile trails.

In the Adirondack Park, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) plays a lead role in managing snowmobile trails through it’s “Snowmobile Plan for the Adirondack Park,” a supplement to OPRHP’s statewide plan.

More information on snowmobiling in New York is available online.

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