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Copied this from another site.
Source: http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2009/no...r-road-vehicle/

By Mike Lee
Tuesday, November 3, 2009


To read the Consumer Product Safety Commission's analysis of Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles and see how to submit your comments, go to www.signonsandiego.com/offhighway


Thousands of off-roaders kicked off the high season last weekend with campouts and spinouts at Glamis, Ocotillo Wells and other desert hot spots.

Many rolled in a relatively new and inexpensive kind of machine - a cross between a golf cart and a dune buggy known as a recreational off-highway vehicle. More than 416,000 ROVs crisscross terrain from San Diego County to Maine, sometimes at more than 60 mph. Their numbers are swelling as recession-conscious hobbyists buy them instead of more expensive sand cars.

The federal Consumer Product Safety Commission says the ROVs were connected to at least 116 deaths in the past six years and are dangerous enough to warrant safety regulations. Last month, the agency said rules proposed by the off-road industry aren't adequate and started creating its own.

Some off-roaders say the regulatory push is an intrusion into their private affairs and a sign of government paternalism. At least a few think the crackdown is part of a broader attempt to squeeze off-roaders into smaller parts of the backcountry.

"Off-roading is a dangerous sport. Period. So is hunting and surfing," said Jay Langley, who works at Off Road Warehouse in San Diego. "There is no way that you can put enough safety features on one of these vehicles to make them safe."

The commission hasn't proposed specific rules, but agency documents highlight concerns about stability, "undesirable" steering characteristics and "inadequate" protection for occupants of ROVs, also called UTVs or side-by-sides.

Manufacturers define ROVs as off-road vehicles with engine displacements up to 1,000 cubic centimeters that are designed to travel on four or more non-highway tires. They typically come with a steering wheel, bucket seats, seat belts and roll bars and cost $10,000 to $15,000. Their cousins - all-terrain vehicles - have straddle seats, handlebars and no protective cage.

Ranchers and farmers were among the earliest ROV users in the late 1990s, but the machines' popularity took off when people started using them for hunting, racing and other recreation.

Langley and many other off- roaders say the main problem with ROVs is people "doing stupid stuff," such as letting children drive unsupervised and going too fast for the terrain.

Daniel Rosenzweig at Magnum Offroad in Vista, which specializes in safety retrofits, said stock ROVs can exceed 30 mph but can be modified to go faster.

"You figure 65 mph with that wheelbase is a recipe for disaster," he said. "People get in these things, see that they have got a roll cage and think they're safe and they go nuts."

Magnum Offroad adds doors, widens wheelbases and upgrades roll bars on ROVs. Typical customers are fathers who want a relatively inexpensive way to teach their children about off- roading.

"Because of their compact size, they are able to go a lot more places" than dune buggies, Rosenzweig said. "They are able to access a lot more territory likes nooks and crannies in the rocks and wooded trails."

ROVs are so new that no helmet laws, minimum age requirements or seat belt mandates apply in California, said Phil Jenkins, cq chief of the off-highway vehicles division for the state parks department. In contrast, anyone riding an ATV on public lands in California is legally required to wear a helmet.

Jenkins said state officials are talking about whether ROV rules are needed.

The Irvine-based Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association is developing voluntary safety standards and said the Consumer Product Safety Commission is jumping the gun with its move to develop rules.

"We are confident that through continued discussion and information sharing, an appropriate standard that reflects the input from all parties can be developed" through the industry process, it said.

At the Consumer Federation of America, senior counsel Rachel Weintraub cq applauded the commission. "The industry has gone where they want to go, which is not far enough," she said.

Weintraub said ROV manufacturers should have anticipated problems after ATVs sparked safety concerns two decades ago with unstable three-wheeled models. She said it's not fair to simply blame ROV users.

"The best way to prevent injuries is to look at the product and say, `What we can we do differently, knowing that people operate them in these ways, to diminish potential hazards?' " she said.

A Consumer Product Safety Commission spokeswoman said the industry's proposed voluntary standards don't fully address stability, handling and occupant retention.

Similar concerns prompted the agency to negotiate a recall with Yamaha in March after two Rhino models were linked to 46 deaths. More than two-thirds of cases involved rollovers and unbelted occupants, and the commission said many appeared to occur during low-speed turns on level ground.

"While we work on new safety rules for ROVs, I urge all riders and passengers to strap on a helmet, use the seat belt, know the terrain and never allow anyone under 16 to drive these vehicles," said Inez Tenenbaum, chairwoman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Sue Cox, director of trauma services at Rady Children's Hospital, said her unit has dealt with 254 injuries in the past three years related to all kinds of off- road vehicles.

"What really is concerning to me is that out of this number of 254, 47 kids were under 10 years old," Cox said. "That is really a sobering statistic. What are parents thinking?"

Many off-road enthusiasts say the answer is responsible parents and drivers, not federal mandates.

"I think it's going to end up just ruining vehicles that are perfectly safe if you follow the manufacturer's guidelines," said Jon Crowley, publisher of utvguide.net. "When does the government get involved with something and make it better?"



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www.DuneGuide.com
www.UTVGuide.net



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Interesting article, like anything else you are going to have morons and you are going to have you safe drivers. Those same morons are going to ruin it for everyone else.

I am sorry, but if you are going to let your 10 year old drive the UTV into the dunes in the middle of the night, there is a good chance that something bad is going to happen. They do not have the capacity to avoid obstacles in a split second. This is not saying that there is something wrong with them, it is just a fact.
 

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Unfortunatly this summer, a 6 year old boy was killed on an atv on the Iron Horse Trail just a couple miles from my home, the boy was wearing a helmet, just was riding with a careless driver, his helmet did not save him. Now because of his death and a couple others this summer in the province, the government is in the beginning of talks for mandatory helmet laws for atvs and utvs. Is it really going to help? I think it will help to some dergree with some injuries and most riders are responsible but the riders that are not are the ones who ruin everything for the rest of us.

Goon
 

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Oh ya, two seat Rhino, some kids in the front and some in the bed of it...if I remember they hit a sign or a rail and the Rhino flipped, killing the driver and someone in the bed. Young kids, probably should not have been driving it, however, I have to feel sorry for the family as well.
 

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This is just an observation, no real great info just something I noticed this last weekend.

Well after riding in my XTZ last season a friend bought a new 09 XTZ and had his first ride this Halloween. He is a real fast two wheel rider. Has been riding for ever, and is very experienced on two wheels.

Well he flipped his new XTZ two different times at least over the weekend. I mean end over end flip! And another two or three rolls down a dune.

Everyone was OK, he had a passenger both times, they were wearing helmets and it was really just funny to them. They ride aggressive and kind of expected it.

The crazy thing is there was barely a scratch on the XTZ:eek: I mean the thing really held up well??? Chris and I looked it over and nothing really even got bent. I was thinking what a idiot the guy is was and will always be, but lmao they are all ready to ride again this weekend. Bill just said if you roll keep your hands and legs in the Cat. lol just thought I would share.
 

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This is just an observation, no real great info just something I noticed this last weekend.

Well after riding in my XTZ last season a friend bought a new 09 XTZ and had his first ride this Halloween. He is a real fast two wheel rider. Has been riding for ever, and is very experienced on two wheels.

Well he flipped his new XTZ two different times at least over the weekend. I mean end over end flip! And another two or three rolls down a dune.

Everyone was OK, he had a passenger both times, they were wearing helmets and it was really just funny to them. They ride aggressive and kind of expected it.

The crazy thing is there was barely a scratch on the XTZ:eek: I mean the thing really held up well??? Chris and I looked it over and nothing really even got bent. I was thinking what a idiot the guy is was and will always be, but lmao they are all ready to ride again this weekend. Bill just said if you roll keep your hands and legs in the Cat. lol just thought I would share.

And as Bill Engvall would say, "There's your sign". j/k to your friend...
 

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And as Bill Engvall would say, "There's your sign". j/k to your friend...

LMAO!!! yep you are so right! My friend Bill has an attention span of a 3 year old, especially when you add alcohol lol

But the guy can drive like crazy, just hope his Cat holds up;)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
That was very impressive. No injuries and no damage.
This is just an observation, no real great info just something I noticed this last weekend.

Well after riding in my XTZ last season a friend bought a new 09 XTZ and had his first ride this Halloween. He is a real fast two wheel rider. Has been riding for ever, and is very experienced on two wheels.

Well he flipped his new XTZ two different times at least over the weekend. I mean end over end flip! And another two or three rolls down a dune.

Everyone was OK, he had a passenger both times, they were wearing helmets and it was really just funny to them. They ride aggressive and kind of expected it.

The crazy thing is there was barely a scratch on the XTZ:eek: I mean the thing really held up well??? Chris and I looked it over and nothing really even got bent. I was thinking what a idiot the guy is was and will always be, but lmao they are all ready to ride again this weekend. Bill just said if you roll keep your hands and legs in the Cat. lol just thought I would share.


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That was some good reading beings I have just got into one of these and still learning about them.. I do believe we are between a rock and hard place as far as safety goes.
Reason being is that you hate to see some innocent child get hurt or killed because of a parent that didnt do what parents are supposed to do when it comes to teaching safety.
In fact some parents should not even own anything that requires some common sense towards safety and we all have witnessed that.

The way it is as of now theres are no law that says if person is a dangerous person behind the wheel and take high risks you can not own a UTV or drive one .

So, thats why I say we are between a rock and a hard place because we hate to see innocent children killed due to no way to stop these people from buying a UTV that has to be driven with some knowledge of safety in many of the places these machines will go. .My 2 cents worth
 

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Hey Rick why dont you run against NaziPelosi and pass a nice law that would require the occupants of a motor vehicle to wear a helmet even in there limos. How funny would that **** be, saturday night out and that ***** pelosi would have to **** up her $500 hairdoo.... But we would have less head injuries on the road.:eek:
 

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You know I grew up riding my GSXR with no helmet up and down the beach in Newport! Talk about picking up on girls!!! some of the best days of my life I tell ya. And then they pull a helmet law in CAli:mad: i mean i was working paying my bike payment and my insurance wtf!!!! I hate being told what to do, I joined the young replublicans and we made a big stink but for nothing the law still stands the bunch of liberal fucks in San Fran run this state.

So now in Glamis I can ride my two wheeler with no helmet legally if I want to. only a two wheeler is legal to ride other than a sand car or Utv. so I do take adavantage and ride with no helmet sometimes just one last F U to the system i guess????

I dont have it in me to stand there and smile and ask for money and really just back door everyone like all politicians do
 

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We have to exercise common sense or our sport will be so regulated might not be fun at all anymore.
Agreed. The best we can do (IMHO) is "self policing". If you see someone doing something stupid, call them on it! Long story as short as I can make it (!), my son was always taught (since he started riding his own 50cc quad at 2.5 yrs old), the machine won't even be started until you have your helmet on, I told him that someone would have to be stupid to ride without a helmet. Yup, you guessed it, a couple of years later, we're riding and stop for a snack break, this older guy and his son (grandson?) pull up and start yakkin with us, my son sees that neither of them is wearing a helmet, so he walks up to the adult and asks "Are you stupid?" !!!! The guy is just stunned (!!) and says, "No ...why would you ask that?". My son responds with "My Dad says you must be stupid if you ride without a helmet". I look at the guy and his little passenger for a second and say "Sorry, but he's right". The guys kid asks "How come I don't have a cool helmet like that kid does?" The guy just starts up his unit and they leave ......... hopefully to buy a couple of helmets!!!
 
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