Some may try riding an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) for the first time at the cottage or think about going on a guided ATV tour. While these are all great, it’s essential to keep in mind the importance of ATV safety. Before hitting the trails, read these beginner safety tips to ensure a safe and fun ride.
Wear the right gear
When riding an ATV, make sure you have the proper gear. Starting with protecting your head, wear an approved motorcycle or ATV helmet which fits well and is secure enough. As stylish as they are, sunglasses are not suited for ATV life. Choose to wear proper riding goggles instead. For your hands, riding gloves are ideal. Depending on the weather, you can either wear a light jacket, sweater or a long-sleeve shirt. If you’re more on the sporty side, there are motocross and polyester jerseys you can wear. Make sure your legs are covered and avoid wearing any shorts or bathing suits. Foot wise, hiking boots are best. Absolutely no flip-flops!
Learn to ride
Just like learning how to drive a car, ATV training courses are available throughout the country. They are fully certified by the Canada Safety Council and a portion of the course can be taken online. Beginner riders can learn about ATV controls, navigating terrain, turning and climbing hills.
Practice, practice, practice
Riding an ATV takes practice. To help you become a better rider, practice changing gears smoothly and how to control the thumb throttle. Suit up with your protective ATV gear and find a few riding buddies to join you while testing your skills on various terrains. Start off slowly and by the time you get the hang of it, challenge yourself on more difficult trails. Be sure to watch your speed as going too fast can result in a severe ATV accident.
No drugs or alcohol
Similar to driving, don’t do any drugs or alcohol before or on your ATV ride. You will be putting yourself and others in danger. Be sure to also put your phone away to prevent distracted driving. You can use it to make a call or take some pictures before or after the ride.
Be aware of province laws and regulations
In Canada, ATV laws are varied depending on which province you live in. Contact Transport Canada or visit their website to learn more about riding an ATV in your province.
If you plan to use an ATV on a public road, insurance is mandatory. With many insurers, your ATV can be covered under your auto insurance policy. To obtain a quote for your all-terrain vehicle, contact one of our licensed insurance advisors today.