RIDE SAFE!! Are you an expert??
You may have been a rider for years and years. You're an avid sledder and you know the do's and dont's... you think. But do you really? Are you prepared before you go out for an afternoon of fun with friends and family? Do you check to make sure you have everything you need in case of an emergency? Do you practice safe riding every time you hit the trails?
I'm sure most of my friends and family who do ride, practice safe riding... to the extent to which they believe is considered "safe". But I've been out and about with people who I know like to get a little crazy and forego the most common safety rules and checks.
We all get a little hyped when that awesome snowfall hits us and we're left with the best riding powder yet. We get too excited and forget to make sure we have all we need before going out to hit the freshly coated trails. And when we do hit the trails we forget our most basic rules of the sport. When the sun is shining down and the trails are sparkling with white diamond-like crystals and the trails are just right for the perfect ride... it's hard to remember just how dangerous the sport can be when we lose sight of the most crucial safety issues.
In the past couple weeks, I've read about too many accidents that may have been avoided. Families receiving that late night phone call which causes heartache and grief among them, and so many in the community. These accidents are common and that is a harsh reality within our loved sport. It's a great sport, but has its many downsides when it comes to uneducated riders, or foolish riders.
One website I have come to like and wish to pass on to every one of my fellow riders and friends... is a great tool and refresher in maintaining safety within the awesome recreational sport we have all grown up with and love. It shares safety precautions from preparedness, snowmobile parts, riding and emergency tips, and dangers to avoid.
Check out http://www.saferiderssafetyawareness.org/ and test your knowledge today!! Even if you're an experienced rider, you may learn that you didn't know something that is vital to the sport and being safe. If you're new to snowmobiling, work through each section before taking the quiz to get a feel for the "do's and don't's". I know it seems trivial and time consuming, but it really isn't... it's fun to see how much you really know and simple to refresh your expertise! We all need to stay safe out there... it's no joy reading about fatal accidents that could have been avoided simply by following ruled and safety precautions.
*The Safe Riders! Snowmobile Safety Awareness Program website provides basic essentials about snowmobile safety and includes short quizzes to help test your knowledge about safe snowmobiling practices. It is meant to supplement information provided by the state or province in which you register or ride your snowmobile, so be sure to check local rules and requirements before venturing out on the snow.
Let's respect the sport and those who ride with us... Let's remember to stay safe while enjoying the sport and having a good time! It doesn't have to end with a dreaded phone call and loss of a loved one.
Until next time...
... aaaand that's a braaaap!