Growing Concern Of Atv Use At The County Level
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Growing Concern Of Atv Use At The County Level

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How the use and mis-use of ATV and other off road vehicles are affecting our terrain.

How the use and mis-use of ATV and other off road vehicles are affecting our terrain.

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Growing Concern Of Atv Use At The County Level Growing Concern Of Atv Use At The County Level Presentation Transcript

  • Growing Concern of ATV Use at the County Level Miles Cudworth Mitch Ulrich John Pietrzak
  • Growing Concern of ATV Use at the County Level
    • ATV use in counties and wilderness environments is looked down upon by many who cherish and preserve these areas.
    • They believe that those who use ATVs and other off road vehicles do not care for the environment. Proof of this is shown by the use and misuse of trails.
    • Here in Minnesota many counties have to deal with this issue and are fighting for ATV regulation and or a ban of it all together.
    • One such county is Washington County, MN.
  • ATV Facts
    • ATVs are one of the fastest-growing forms of outdoor recreation. The number of riders has grown tenfold since 1972, from approximately 5 million to 51 million in 2004.
    • ATV users account for about 11 million annual visits to national forests and grasslands.
    • More than 83 percent of wildlife managers in a recent survey say that they have seen "resource damage to wildlife habitat" caused by ATVs.
    • More than 57.2 percent of state fisheries managers surveyed agreed or strongly agreed that ATVs "negatively impact fishing and fish habitats.
  • Environmental Concerns
    • ATVs Affect Air Quality:
    • 19% of ATVs are equipped with two-stroke engines, which release up to 30% of their fuel unburned into the air, which is 118 times as much more smog forming pollutants as modern cars.
    Typical two-stroke engine
  • Environmental Concerns
    • ATVs Affect Wildlife and Habitat:
    • ATVs compact the soil which create mud holes and gullies that alter water flow patterns and increase erosion and a decrease in habitat regeneration.
    • ATVs are a primary reason for the introduction of invasive weeds and other vegetation into other more fragile areas.
    • Wildlife habitat displacement occurs through negative impacts by the presence of ATVs. Snow compaction also affects the survival and nesting habits of small mammals.
  • Economic Effects
    • What we are paying for :
      • Construction of ATV trails
      • Maintenance of the ATV trails
      • Clean-up of garbage
      • enforcement regulations
      • pay for emergency vehicle responses
      • pay for hospitals
      • ATV Club expenses
      • county employees for trail administration
      • liability insurance
      • litigation both for defense and plaintiff
      • DNR personnel
      • ditch repair
      • repair wetlands
      • According to local real estate agents property values decrease 10 - 25% depending on the property's distance from OHV (off highway vehicles) trails.
      • An exact dollar amount for repairs to land totals to “$2,500 per square mile”
  • At your own risk! 4 of 5 ATV deaths in 2008 on Road Right of Way
    • 3/26/08– 12:30 p.m.– Beltrami County
    • 94-yr-old male died when the ATV he was operating collided with a vehicle while crossing Hwy. 71
    • Type of Terrain: Road Right of Way
    • Type of Accident: Machine-car collision
    • 3/10/08– 4:00 p.m.– Crow Wing County
    • 56-yr-old female died on 3/11/08 as a result of an ATV accident that occurred on 3/10. Machine rolled over and she was thrown onto pavement.
    • Type of Terrain: Road Right of Way
    • Type of Accident: Machine rollover
    • 3/8/08– 1:45 a.m.– Crow Wing County
    • 21-yr-old male died when thrown from the ATV he was a passenger on in a ditch near Brainerd International Raceway. Operator survived and charged with vehicular homicide.
    • Type of Terrain: Road Right of Way
    • Alcohol involved: BAC .068
    • Type of Accident: Machine rollover
    • 1/8/08– 4:59 p.m.– Otter Tail County
    • 37-tr-old male died when he lost control of ATV he was operating, causing ATV to roll into oncoming lane and driver was thrown from vehicle
    • Type of terrain: Road Right of Way
    • Type of Accident: Machine rollover
  •  
  • Ethical Concerns, a Quagmire
    • Many ATV users disregard the posted signs that show where they can and where they cannot ride their ATVs.
    • Because of this intentional disregard for rules and regulations ATV users create their own trails and ruin the landscape.
    • This not only damages the natural habitat but it ruins the outdoors experience for others who are not there to ride ATVS.
    • Among those disturbed are:
      • Hikers
      • Campers
      • Horseback riders
      • Bicycle riders
  • Outcome
    • Washington County Board of Commissioners voted and passed Ordinance #168 for the management of all ATV’s within the county’s road right of ways.
    • Minnesota Statute 84.92 allows Washington County to regulate the operation of all ATV’s within the county’s road right of ways.
    • Ordinance 168 was put on a 2-year probationary period to determine effectiveness
  • Principle Players
    • 5 county commissioners
      • Hegberg
      • Kriesel
      • Peterson
      • Pulkrabek
      • Stafford
    • 4 commissioners voted in favor of the ordinance
  • Purpose
    • To provide for health, safety and welfare of county’s citizens, and to ensure the integrity of its roads and streets and the appropriate use of the rights of way, the county strives to keep its public right of way in a state of good repair.
  • Commissioner Pulkrabek
    • Lone commissioner that did not support the ordinance
    • “No fun allowed ordinance”
    • Does not agree with government taking away people’s freedom and privileges
  • Violations
    • For the first offense, the person will be guilty of a petty misdemeanor and will be given a fine of $120.
    • For multiple offenses, the person will be guilty of a misdemeanor and punished according to the law.
  • Enforceability and Effective Date
    • Sheriff’s deputies, state troopers, and conservation officers
    • The ordinance was put into effect January 1, 2004.
  • Wayne Sandberg
    • Deputy Director of Transportation and Physical Development
      • Oversight of over 300 miles of county highway & major arterial roads
      • Assist in planning, construction, and maintenance of county roads
    • In charge of an effects study for Ordinance 168
  •  
  • Origins of Ordinance 168
  • What is a Ditch?
  • What is a Ditch con’t…
  • What was studied? Enforcement Issues/Violations
  • What was Studied? Damage
  •  
  • What was Studied? ATV Registrations
  • What was Studied? Public Comment
  •  
  •  
  • ATV or Trail Bike Problems?
    • Here is the reporting procedure:
    • Immediately call your local DEP dispatch center
    • Give the location and a brief description of every occurrence as follows:
      • “ 3 ATVs on Diamond Ledge Road in Stafford at 3 PM.” Additional information is good but always not necessary.
      • You may be asked for your name and telephone number so a local DEP officer can contact you for additional information. Your name will not be given to the perpetrators.
    • It is very important to report all occurrences since the DEP logs all the reports into their system. It gives the DEP an idea of how great the problem is in your area and if severe they could conduct a large scale “sweep” in the future. It also gives the problem the visibility it deserves.
    • Do not try to deal with the problem yourself as ATV riders have shown an inclination to avoid apprehension and have even run down and injured people trying to stop them. Remember they are knowingly breaking the law and are criminals.
  • Questions?
  • Works Cited
    • Greenberger, Carol (2007). The Controversy of ATVs on Public Lands. Retrieved April 2, 2008, from Chattooga Conservancy Web site: http://www.chattoogariver.org/index.php?quart=Su2003&req=atvs
    • Hodgin , Dennis (2005, August 3). ATV or Trail Bike Problems. Retrieved March 25, 2008, from EASTERN CONNECTICUT FOREST LANDOWNERS ASSOCIATION/WOLF DEN LAND TRUST Web site: http://www.ecfla.org/articles/atv.htm
    • Mackie, Paul (2005). ATVs Becoming Major Concern in Nation's Counties. Retrieved March 24, 2008, from NACo Web site: http://www.countyengineers.org/Template.cfm?Section=public_lands&template=/ContentM anagement/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=12669
    • Mississippi Headwaters Protection Alliance, (2007). How You can Help. Retrieved April 2, 2008, from Mississippi Headwaters Protection Alliance Web site: http://www.mhpalliance.org/html/help.html
    • Pavey , Rob (2007, October 15). ATVs cause problems at parks, Destroys vegetation, disturbs wildlife. Retrieved March 27, 2008, from http://www.onlineathens.com/stories/101507/news_20071015028.shtml
    • Department of Transportation and Physical Development (2006). Ordinance 168- For the Management of All Terrain Vehicles in County-Rights-of-Way: Effects Study. Washington County, MN: Wayne Sandberg
    • W.Sandberg, personal communication, April 4, 2008