IDAHO CITY, Idaho — The Boise County Sheriff's Office is investigating three separate rollover crashes involving UTVs and ATVs over the weekend. One crash near Placerville left a man dead.
Deputies are urging the community to ride safely. Investigators say none of the six people involved in the weekend crashes were wearing helmets. In Idaho, riders and passengers under 18 are legally required to wear a helmet.
Boise County Sheriff's Deputy David Gomez said the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed more people outdoors, and now they're seeing an increase in waste left behind in recreational areas around the county. Deputies are asking the community to take their trash with them or dispose of it properly.
IDPR TO OFFER 170 PLUS OHV SAFETY CLASSES THIS SUMMER.
The Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation said it has also seen an increase in more people using the trails across the state.
“Over the COVID-19 pandemic, almost every machine throughout the state has been sold off the shelf room floors so we’re getting far more users in the backcountry. Our trail systems are getting more impacted than they have historically,” said Rich Gummersall, a state off-highway vehicle (OHV) education coordinator.
Gummersall's team is offering more than 170 OHV safety classes across the state this summer.
“We always start with speed management because generally speed that gets the recreationist out of control. We focused a lot of our education on throttle control, understanding the brake system, and safely turning and stopping the machine,” Gummersall said.
Gummersall said trails go in two-way directions and recommends riders to be aware of their surroundings.
“Always share the trails as best you can. Know the abilities of your machine and the rider abilities so you don’t outride the capability of yourself and the machine,” he said.
IDPR runs the Motorized Trails Program to maintain the trails and provide opportunities for people to learn how to safely recreate when using OHV. Another safety reminder Gummersall said for riders over the age of 18 to keep in mind is wearing a helmet.
“When you think about it, 60 seconds of putting on a helmet or six months recovering from terminal brain damage. A helmet is your first line of defense to protect your brain,” Gummersall said.