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Off-roading this long weekend? No booze, says OPP

Monday, May 12, 2014   by: Staff



Lack of helmets and alcohol use contribute to rising ORV death toll

ORILLIA – The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is reporting that off-road vehicle (ORV) deaths have reached a four-year high and the causal factors have the OPP concerned heading into the Victoria Day Long Weekend.

A total of 20 people died in ORV incidents in OPP jurisdiction during 2013, compared to 12 in 2012, 14 in 2011 and 17 in 2010. 

Of the 20 fatalities in 2013, 13 of them were attributed to lack of helmet use and nine of them involved alcohol consumption.

These alarming statistics have the OPP warning ORV riders who include alcohol and exclude helmets as part of their riding activity to curb these deadly behaviours before these leading causes of ORV deaths continue on an upward trend.      

The OPP is also asking the public to partner with them to reduce the rising number of ORV fatalities.

Officers are calling on the family members and friends of ORV enthusiasts to urge their loved ones to wear a helmet and drive sober.    

“Over the past 10 years (2004-2013), a total of 263 people have died in ORV incidents within OPP jurisdiction,” said OPP Deputy Commissioner Brad Blair, Provincial Commander, Traffic Safety and Operational Support. “Imagine how much more devastating losing a family member or friend would be if you knew they were impaired or not wearing a helmet and you didn’t intervene to save their life”, Blair added.

Motorcycle deaths are another OPP statistic that is on the rise.

A total of 28 motorcyclists died (in OPP jurisdiction) in 2013, compared to 26 in 2012 and 21 in 2011. 

Impaired, aggressive and distracted driving are all common contributing factors in motorcycle crashes investigated by the OPP. 

Sadly, in some cases, the riders were not doing anything wrong when the collision occurred.   

“Among the most tragic of the 26 motorcycle fatalities last year are the 11 in which the motorcyclist was driving properly at the time of the collision.  Far too often, our collision reconstruction investigations reveal that the actions of another driver were a causal factor. This makes motorcycle safety an issue to which all road users need to pay close attention,” said OPP Chief Superintendent Don Bell, Commander, Highway Safety Division. 

Motorcyclists are more vulnerable than other road users because motorcycles are tougher to see than other vehicles and they provide virtually no protection in the event of a crash.  

For this reason, all motorists need to maintain a keen awareness of their surroundings and always be on watch for motorcycles.   

With high volumes of traffic expected over the long weekend, OPP officers throughout the province will be doing their part to keep people safe, both on and off-road. 

They are counting on one of their most valued partners - the many drivers and ORV enthusiasts who head out this weekend – to drive and ride safely in a collective effort to get through the weekend incident-free.  

Leading up to and over the May Long Weekend, the OPP will also be taking part in Canada Road Safety Week, which runs from May 13-19, 2014. 

During the campaign, the OPP and its policing partners will be focusing their education and enforcement efforts on the “Big Four” driving behaviours on Ontario roads that place all roads users at risk. 

These are: driving impaired by alcohol or drugs, failure to use or improper use of seat belts, distracted and aggressive driving.  

Learn More:

Off-Road Vehicle Safety

Smart Ride Safe Ride

Safe and Responsible Driving

Motorcycle Safety

Canada Road Safety Week


Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
IgnorantNortherner 5/12/2014 3:47:18 PM Report

I enjoy hearing others opinions on things like which foods I should buy or where I should vacation or whathaveyou but the day I let someone else dictate to me what I can or cannot do with my own body (my property) when it does not infringe on you is the day I die, and at that point you can cremate me or send me down the river or leave me to the birds. #PromiseIwontputupafigh
oldred 5/12/2014 4:20:01 PM Report

@ IgnorantNortherner,
Who's tax dollars/donations are going to pay for the OPP or Search and Rescue to drag your lifeless body out of the bush,and then notify next of kin?
Who's going to pay to Medivac your braindead lump to some trauma unit down south because you don't think helmets are cool enough for YOU?
NOT You,,,because you're "IGNORANT"!!

Boomer4771 5/12/2014 4:23:03 PM Report

The booze part I agree 100 percent. Wearing a helmet should be MY CHOICE not others. When I go off roading I am travelling at a max speed of 40 kms. When I am hunting it is more like 10 to 20 kms an hour. Screw your helmet laws...
clyde705 5/12/2014 4:27:57 PM Report

you gotta go farther and farther in the bush every year to enjoy yourself. Why dont they spend their time catching the little idiots steeling peoples stuff, and drinking and driving in town and on the hiways, not the bush.leave us alone!
IgnorantNortherner 5/12/2014 4:30:04 PM Report

oldred, in a sane world I will have voluntarily entered into contract with parties to provide those services or I would not and perhaps my family will pay for those services or perhaps, instead, I will be food.

You certainly should not have to pay for my "brain dead" actions, should you?
Ski-Dude 5/12/2014 4:47:57 PM Report

ORV accidents are a small percentage compared to the roads. How many ORV's are there out there? Lets pour resources there! Is this how the government claims they create jobs?
Ski-Dude 5/12/2014 4:53:49 PM Report

"involved alcohol consumption"

NOT impairment.

Sorry, just wanted to clarify that. This is where the law is "grey" and law enforcement can report whatever they feel is more compelling to their agenda.
leadfoot 5/12/2014 7:00:20 PM Report

The majority of people base there thoughts off statistical information because to educate themselves in order to form an intelligent opinion on a topic must take too long. Did anyone research the number of drug related fatalities and the costs to the tax payers for treating the drug users. If I had the choice on which bill I had to pay it would definitely be the off-roaders, also it doesn't take a genius to figure out that kids playing around off-roading are less likely to get involved in drugs than the ones stuck hanging out who knows where.
rider_ 5/12/2014 8:03:44 PM Report

LOTS of booze this weekend... LOTS of booze this week... LOTS of booze right now,
cooper2006 5/12/2014 8:24:32 PM Report


who's tax dollars do you think are paying to police this BS??

If you're argument is purely financial, it would be cheaper to investigate the 20 accidents then to try and suppress them...!

what an indoctrinated, brainwashed comment!

Frio 5/13/2014 7:36:31 AM Report

“Over the past 10 years (2004-2013), a total of 263 people have died in ORV incidents within OPP jurisdiction,” "Of the 20 fatalities in 2013, 13 of them were attributed to lack of helmet use and nine of them involved alcohol consumption". The OPP where just putting out the statistics, but obviously the ORV riders around SSM know they are invincible and this only applies to other people.. There is one poster on here who thinks his head is good for a crash up to 40 km an hour so no need for a helmet. There are no laws or restrictions on being ignorant, stupid, or deliberately endangering your own life but the police still have a mandate to spend time and resources to clean up after these people as part of their job. Enjoy your weekend!
Ski-Dude 5/13/2014 3:49:49 PM Report

Maybe some shouldn't even attempt to walk across the street!
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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