Don't forget, you need to look after yourself as well as your ATV. Here are some pointers to help.
Basic ATV safety
Always wear a helmet, goggles and gloves, sturdy boots with ankle protection, a long-sleeved shirt and long trousers. Read your owner's manual and familiarise yourself with the all warning labels displayed on your ATV.
Carry a survival kit, first aid box and mobile phone if possible. Have a riding strategy – never ride routes beyond your capability and be prepared to adapt to different types of terrain. Always ride with your head up, back straight and both feet on the footrests.
Be aware of risks – scan for potential danger or hidden obstacles and never ride past your limit of visibility. Use appropriate speed at all times. If you do need to stop quickly, apply both brakes evenly and keep your feet on the footrests.
Never ride under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. Never carry a passenger unless your machine has been specifically designed and manufactured to do so. Ride an ATV that’s right for your age and experience and supervise riders younger than 16 – remember – ATVs are not toys. Always ride at a safe speed.
Five pre-ride safety checks
Every time you ride your ATV try to perform the following pre-ride checks:
- Check the condition of all four tyres and ensure correct inflation pressure.
- Check brake fluid levels and brake lever tension – there should be no more than 25-30mm free play on the front brake lever and 15-20mm on the rear brake lever. If in doubt consult your owner’s manual for model-specific tolerances.
- Check steering for unobstructed lock-to-lock movement and that all exposed parts are free from dirt and debris.
- Make sure the wheel axle nuts are secure.
- Check the emergency stop switch is working, plus the operation of all lights.