When it comes to sheer exhilaration, there’s nothing quite like riding an ATV. Keep the fun going by making sure that you and everyone in your party gets home safely—and that you’ll all be welcome back next time. Check out these great tips, and find an ATV RiderCourse near you by visiting the ATV Safety Institute. Let the good times roll!
General Safety Tips
- Always wear a helmet and other protective gear.
- Never ride on public roads—another vehicle could hit you.
- Never ride under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
- Never carry a passenger or ride as a passenger on a single-rider vehicle.
- Ride an ATV that’s right for your age.
- Ride with an adult if you’re younger than 16; ATVs are not toys.
- Ride only on designated trails and at a safe speed.
A Matter of Respect
- Before you head out, learn about the area you will ride in. Contact the land manager or property owner to ensure you understand the restrictions, and have permission to ride there. Get maps of the area, and stay on trails if they are provided.
- Keep your ATV quiet. Excessive noise stresses wildlife and annoys property owners.
- Obey trail markers and closure signs. There are many reasons why an area may be closed to ATVs, including the existence of a fire hazard or other safety hazards. The reasons for posting may not be obvious, but if it is posted as closed—stay out!
- Always leave gates and fences the way you found them. This is especially important on private lands where livestock may be kept.
- Leave the area as clean as you found it. If you see litter, pick it up and carry it out on your ATV.
- Be courteous to others you may meet on the trail. Give right-of-way to hikers and horseback riders. Pull off the trail and stop your engine for horses.
- Approach livestock or wildlife on the trail slowly. If you startle them, they may run directly into your path. Give them time to react and give them as wide a berth as possible.