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snowmobile safetyBruce Peninsula Ontario Provincial Police would like to offer some reminders and safety tips to those planning on operating a snowmobile during the winter months.

When you operate a snowmobile off private property you must hold a valid Ontario Driver's Licence, the motorized snow vehicle (MSV) that you are operating must be registered with the Ministry of Transportation with a valid sticker attached. The MSV must also have valid insurance. An exemption to the driver's licence is a person over 12 years of age or old, that holds a valid motorized snow vehicle operator's licence (MSVOL) or a snowmobile driver's licence from another jurisdiction, can operate a MSV on snowmobile trails.

Rules of the road

Speed limits - Snowmobiles may not be operated at a greater rate of speed than:

50 km/h - on snowmobile trails

50 km/h - on roads where the speed limit is over 50 km/h

20 km/h - on roads where the speed limit is 50 km/h or less

20 km/h - in any public park or exhibition grounds

Helmets

Drivers and passengers must always wear a snowmobile helmet that meets the standards approved for motorcycle helmets, with the chin strap securely fastened. Everyone who rides on a cutter, sled or similar device towed by a snowmobile must also wear a helmet.

Towing

You must use a rigid tow-bar when towing a sled or similar device behind a snowmobile.

Never drive impaired by alcohol or drugs. It is against the law. Alcohol, illegal drugs, even prescription and some over-the-counter drugs can slow your reaction time and affect your ability to make good decisions.

If you are convicted of impaired driving on a snowmobile, you will lose your driving privileges for ALL TYPES of vehicles for at least one year. This includes cars, trucks motorcycles and commercial vehicles.

source: media release, Bruce Peninsula OPP

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