IRVINE, Calif., May 25, 2011 – This holiday weekend, thousands of recreational off-highway vehicle enthusiasts will explore trails, deserts and public lands across the country, and ROHVA is calling on all drivers to be safe and responsible while having fun.
“Recreational off-highway vehicles are a great way for families and friends to enjoy time together in the great outdoors,” said Paul Vitrano, executive vice president of the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association. “But along with that fun comes the responsibility to drive safely and preserve the environment. ROHVA leads the way in providing ROV enthusiasts with valuable safety education, tips and resources that are available anytime online at www.rohva.org”.
Visitors to the website can take ROHVA’s award-winning ROV E-Course. The online training is a free, multi-media, interactive safety course that addresses the risks when driving an ROV and reinforces safe practices that will reduce the chance risk of injury.
A recent study determined that 98 percent of ROV crashes involved at least one of the warned-against behaviors found in ROV operator manuals. These behaviors include doing stunts, riding at excessive speeds, riding on paved roads, using alcohol or drugs while driving, improper seating of passengers, failing to wear a helmet and failing to wear a seat belt.
The study also found that 23 percent of crashes involved drivers under the recommended age. ROHVA recommends that anyone under the age of 16, or without a driver’s license, should not operate an ROV.
“The Safety Rules found at www.rohva.org are common-sense guidelines that everyone should review and follow whenever they drive an ROV,” Vitrano said. “Those seven rules are key to the safe enjoyment of these great vehicles.” Those rules are:
- Always fasten your seat belt, wear a helmet and other protective gear and keep all parts of your body inside the ROV.
- Avoid paved surfaces. ROVs are designed to be operated off-highway.
- Drive only in designated areas, at a safe speed, and use care when turning and crossing slopes.
- Never drive or ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Never drive an ROV unless you’re 16 or older and have a valid driver’s license. ROVs are not toys.
- Never carry more passengers than the ROV is designed for, and never allow a passenger who is too small to sit in a passenger seat to ride in the ROV.
- Read and follow the operator’s manual and warning labels.
Sometimes referred to as side-by-sides or utility terrain vehicles (UTVs), ROVs are motorized off-highway vehicles designed to travel on four or more non-highway tires, with a steering wheel, non-straddle seating, seat belts, an occupant-protective structure, and engine displacement up to 1,000cc. Current models are designed with seats for a driver and one or more passengers. ROVs are used for a variety of outdoor recreational activities as well as many work applications.
The Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association is a national industry organization that promotes the safe and responsible use of ROVs. ROHVA is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to develop equipment, configuration and performance standards. Based in Irvine, Calif., the not-for-profit association is sponsored by Arctic Cat, BRP, Kawasaki, Polaris and Yamaha. For more information visit www.rohva.org.