Wood Buffalo RCMP: Off Highway Vehicle Winter Riding Tips

Posted on Nov 29, 2018

November 29, 2018

The Wood Buffalo RCMP and Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo Bylaw Services would like to remind all Off Highway Vehicles (OHV) operators and passengers of water body safety now that we are in the early stages of freeze up for the winter season.

In order to safely enjoy every day of riding, please keep in mind the following guidelines:
• Avoid traveling over unfamiliar frozen bodies of water;
• Always stop and check the thickness of ice before proceeding over a frozen body of water;
• Never assume that because someone else crossed the ice recently that it is still safe;
• If you are crossing a body of water, please wear a floatation device over your outer clothing;
• Let someone know where you will be travelling to, and when you plan to return home;
• When possible, travel with other riders and cross the ice one at a time;
• Carry an emergency kit including a cell phone (and charger), food, water, and first aid supplies;

These are the absolute minimum ice thickness safety guidelines:
• Under 4 inches – stay off;
• 4 inches – Ice fishing or other activities on foot;
• 5-7 inches – Snowmobile or ATV;
• 8-12 inches – Car or small pickup;
• 12-15 inches – Medium truck.

Keep in mind ice thickness guidelines are for smooth, uninterrupted bodies of water. Rivers and streams that freeze over time with several ice pushes or “popcorn” ice have a greater chance of breaking under strain and therefore need to be thicker than guidelines suggest. Because of natural variations in ice thickness and currents, ice may be very thick in some places and very thin in active current areas.

For more information regarding safe OHV you can visit http://altasnowmobile.ab.ca/.

For further information or if you have any complaints of OHV use, contact Wood Buffalo RCMP at (780) 788-4000, or RMWB Bylaw Services at (780) 762-5858 or rmwb.ca/OHV.

Media Contact:
Constable Mélanie Cappiello-Stébenne
Wood Buffalo RCMP-GRC
(780) 742-8821