Winter is the season for outdoor fun in the snow. For many, this means that winter is the season for snowmobiles. Snowmobile riding can be a fun pastime and a great winter activity, but is also can be a very dangerous activity. In one tragic case, for example, Boston.com reported on December 21, 2012 that a Massachusetts’ woman was seriously injured in a snowmobile crash after she rode the snowmobile off of a drop-off and fell about 20 feet.
If you are planning on riding a snowmobile this winter season, our Massachusetts injury attorneys urge you to exercise caution. By being prudent when it comes to snowmobile operations, you can hopefully avoid becoming another victim involved in a tragic snowmobile accident.
Snowmobile Safety Tips
There are a variety of different tips that you should keep in mind in order to minimize your risk of becoming involved in a snowmobile accident. For example:
- You should always stay on approved and signed trails when you are out snowmobiling. This was the advice provided by the Fish and Game Department in response to the accident involving the Massachusetts’ woman who drove the snowmobile over a drop-off. When you veer off the designated path, you put yourself at risk of something unexpected like that happening.
- You should always be alert for open water or thin ice. Ice can cause you to go out of control, becoming involved in an accident. Water, too, can cause your snowmobile to get out of your control.
- You should always skip ice riding, which is riding on frozen rivers or on frozen lakes. It is difficult to tell when these lakes and rivers are frozen solidly enough for you to try this. As such, there is a strong chance that the ice won’t hold the weight of a snowmobile and that the snowmobile may fall through the cracks, likely taking you with it.
- You should never drink and drive your snowmobile. Having too much to drink impairs your ability to drive your snowmobile safely just as it makes it impossible for you to drive a car without risking being seriously hurt as a result of your diminished faculties.
- You should skip the night riding whenever possible. At night time, you are less visible to others who could potentially cause a crash. You are also unable to see signs of danger such as thin ice or open water.
- You should not ride alone. If you are out on a snowmobile by yourself and something happens to you, you’ll have no way to get help. You could be trapped in the woods alone, cold and hungry, with no way to seek medial assistance.
- You should skip riding in adverse weather. Bad weather conditions can increase the chance of an accident and there is no sense in taking a foolish risk just to be able to ride after dark.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a snowmobile accident, contact Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-877-617-5333.
Distracted Driving and Holiday Accident Fatalities, Boston Personal Injury Attorney Blog, December 3, 2012.