November 14, 2009
British Columbia plans to make off-road vehicles part of the Motor Vehicle Act by requiring owners to licence them. The announcement applies to snowmobiles, quads, dirt bikes and any other back country recreation vehicle, or as some people refer to them “wreckreational” vehicles.
These machines are hard on the environment. So are snowmobiles and dirt bikes. They are loud and can be threatening to wildlife and other trail users. Licensing will give law enforcement officials and conservation officers some means of tracking the vehicles but it won’t stop what some conservationists call “terrain terrorists.”
Many riders are respectful of the rules and accommodate other people and animals out enjoying the outdoors, but by their very nature the loud vehicles limit the ability of others to enjoy some quiet time or view wildlife
What licensing won’t do is keep ATVs out of sensitive areas. B.C. should follow the lead of provinces like Quebec where there are clearly defined areas for motorized and non-motorized trail users. Then they need to back up the rules with some teeth.
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