15 Station Road, off hwy. #3, Head of St. Margaret's Bay
Safety Minded ATV Association
You may ask yourself, what is the safety method for the rider behind you.  It’s
quite simple.  At every intersection, it is your responsibility to wait for the rider
behind you and make sure that he/she sees that you have turned down a

1.        THE RIDER BEHIND YOU:  The most important thing to keep in mind is that YOU are responsible for the rider
behind you.  When you come to an intersection, a trail or a fork in the road, wait at the intersection until the rider
behind you sees you.  Do not worry about the rider ahead of you.  If he/she follows the same rules as you, he/she will
be waiting for you at the next turn off.  It almost seems like some people panic as soon as they loose sight to the rider
ahead of them for fear of getting lost.  They then take off to try and keep up with the rider ahead of them and not
waiting for the guy behind them.  As long as everyone in the group waits at the intersection for the rider behind, things
should go very smoothly.  The leader could be 3 Km ahead and have taken 10 turnoffs, but the 11th rider in the group
should be able to find his way since there should be a rider waiting for him/her at each intersection.  If you are worried
about getting lost, it is best to stick close to the front of the pack.  Once you come to an intersection and see the rider
ahead of you waiting for you, give him/her a thumbs-up indicating that you see him/her.  The rider that is waiting, wait
until the rider behind you gives the thumbs-up before going.  Don’t assume he has seen you and then proceed to take
off down the trail.  Wait for the thumbs-up.

2.        The 5 Minute Rule:  If you get to an intersection and you don’t see the rider behind you, wait 5 minutes.  If the
2.        The 5 Minute Rule:  If you get to an intersection and you don’t see the rider behind you, wait 5 minutes.  If the
rider doesn’t appear, turn around and slowly redo your route until you find the rider behind you.  Be careful since rider
doesn’t appear, turn around and slowly redo your route until you find the rider behind you.  Be careful since chances
are the missing rider or riders will be trying to catch up to the lead pack and may be traveling at a higher then normal

3.        Taking Breaks:  If possible, everyone should stop for a break at the same time unless someone at the rear of
the pack has a GPS tracker or knows where the lead pack is heading.  If the rear group decides to take a break and
probably end up turning around and going back to look for the missing riders.  This will end ou spreading out the group
and possibly slowing down the ride and possibly getting a rider lost.

4.        Don’t Panic:  If you come to an intersection and the rider ahead of you didn’t wait for you, look for fresh tire
tracks.  If you aren’t sure which way the group went, it is better to wait at the intersection then to try and guess which
way they went.  Someone will come back and look for you.  If you take a guess and go the wrong way, the person going
back may end up traveling a long distance and not find you since you went the wrong way.  It is always better to wait for
someone to come and get you.

5.        Major Intersections: The group leader will always wait at every major intersection and let the entire group catch
up.  This will allow the group to bunch up together once again and keep everyone together.

6.        Hazards on the Trail:  If you run into a hazard on the trail (washout, large bump, bridge out, etc.), it is best to
wait at the hazard to make sure the rider behind you doesn’t come blasting around the corner and not see the hazard.  
Give yourself enough distance for visibility and wait until you are sure that he/she sees the hazard on the trail.

7.        Bike Counting:  The group leader should always count the bikes at every break or major intersection, to make
sure no one is lost.  If you decide to join a group or leave a group, please let the leader know.

8.        Mirrors:  If you don’t have one, a mirror is a great investment.  It only take a quick glance into your mirror to
make sure the person behind you is still there.

9.        Headlights:  ALWAYS HAVE YOUR HEADLIGHT ON.  Traveling in big groups will create a lot of dust and you
want to make sure that you are visible to oncoming traffic.  Also, this helps the person ahead if he has a mirror since
he/she will see your headlights in his/her mirror.

10.        5 Minute Warning:  The group leader will try and give a 5 minute warning before it is time to gear up and hit the
trail once again.  So once the warning is given, get ready to hit the trail.

11.        Hand Signals:  If you know the hand signals, use them.  If a left turn is coming up, point your left arm straight
out.  If a right hand turn is coming up, put your left arm over your helmet and point towards the right.  If you are
stopping, put your left arm into an L shape pointing upwards. This tells people you are slowing down.

12.        Breaking and Stopping:  A lot of newer automatic ATVs have awesome engine breaking.  A lot of people rely
on the engine break to slow them down.  Don’t assume the rider behind you notices that you are slowing down or
coming to a stop.  If you have a break light, give it a quick pull so the rider behind you knows you are slowing down.  
Once again, hand signals work great.