As we all are out enjoying the outdoors which may include riding off-road vehicles (ORVs), the RM of St. Clements and Manitoba RCMP want to remind operators of the laws of ORVs to ensure a safe ride. It is important that we understand and respect that sometimes ORV’s come close to residents. As a community filled with respectful individuals we need to lead by example and also teach our children what it means to be a respectful and safe all-terrain vehicle and off-road vehicle rider.
Most laws around ORVs fall under the Off Road Vehicles Act which is enforced by the RCMP. Trespassing and vandalism is outside the scope of our Protective Services Officer so when we receive concerns we provide that information to the RCMP who can then act on the issue.
Under this Act it states ‘No riding’:
- on privately owned or leased land without permission
- in a careless matter
- without reasonable consideration for other persons and property
Here are some general rules to keep in mind when riding an ORV:
- Anyone under the age of 14 must have direct supervision of a parent or legal guardian who is a minimum of 18 years of age. Youth over the age of 14 can ride without parental supervision, but cannot cross a roadway until they obtain a valid driver’s license
- ORVs are not to be operated on roadways, shoulders, medians of divided roadways, or sidewalks
- ORVs are permitted to be in the ditch, provided travel is in the same direction as vehicle traffic, the ORV is to the right of the roadway and the shoulder, and the ORV is being operated in an area where ORV use is permitted. Always remember to be on the lookout for hazards in the ditch, such as culverts, driveway approaches, and road signs
- No riding:
- On privately owned or leased land without permission
- Within 30 metres of a dwelling that is not yours between midnight and 7:00 am
- Within 30 metres of a playground or area set aside for recreation that is not fully fenced
- In a careless manner
- Without reasonable consideration for other persons and property
- Stay away from environmentally sensitive areas and wetlands, and areas easily damaged by churning wheels
- When conditions are dry, use caution as sparks from an ORV can ignite grass and branches, starting a fire
We are constantly working to see what additional measures we can explore within our authority. We address these issues and concerns through education and communication on our website, Facebook and monthly newsletters. The RCMP has also heavily focused on issues much of the same through their communications.
One thing to be mindful of when using an ORV is farmer’s fields. Due to the rural area we live in, we have many farmers that rely on their seeds and crops for their livelihood. Driving across their fields can cause irreparable and costly damage. Trespassing and vandalism are outside the scope of our Protective Services Officer so when we receive these types of concerns we provide that information to the RCMP who can act on the issue.
Both the RCMP as well as the municipality have authority to govern ORV usage within the municipal boundaries under the Off Road Vehicles Act and Municipal By-Laws. Be aware of local bylaws in the area you are riding
IMPAIRED DRIVING LAWS APPLY TO ALL MOTORIZED VEHCILES.
ONLY OPERATE AN ORV/ATV WHEN SOBER AND ALERT.
In 2021, RCMP in Manitoba responded to 8 fatal collisions involving ORVs and 58 collisions where serious injury occurred. Contributing factors in these collisions included speed, no helmet and impaired driving.
Knowledge and safety are key, so make sure you are aware of the rules in place in the area where you are riding.
Be respectful and courteous of others using the outdoors, and enjoy the ride!