WINDSOR, ONT. -- Essex County OPP officers are reminding all off-road vehicle users to obey applicable laws and safety precautions on Pelee Island.

In accordance with the Off-Road Vehicle Act, municipalities must have a by-law permitting certain All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) and Off-Road Vehicle (ORV) use on roadways.

The Township of Pelee also has a by-law permitting on-road ATV/ORV use as outlined in the Corporation of the Township of Pelee by-law 2015-25.

More information can be found on the township’s website.

“Being on private property, without permission from the property owner, is a violation under the Trespass to Property Act and could subject riders to charges. Causing damage by riding on property could subject riders to mischief charges,” according to an OPP news release.

OPP say being a responsible rider by following laws and wearing approved helmets will significantly reduce the risk of injuries as well as being charged with offences.

The Smart Ride Safe Ride ORV Handbook outlines the rules and requirements for ORVs. It will tell you:

  • · Where you can ride your ATV/ORV
  • · Who can drive an ATV/ORV in Ontario
  • · The rules of the road you must follow
  • · How to be a safe and responsible rider.

Some highlights include:

  • · For any on road usage, all operators must be at least 16 years old and hold at a minimum a valid G2 or M2 licence.
  • · Children under 12 may only legally operate an ATV/ORV on private land occupied by the ATV/ORV operator. Close supervision must be provided at all times.
  • · Wear an approved motorcycle helmet.
  • · ORVs must be driven in the same direction as traffic and on the shoulder where available; when not available on the right most portion of the roadway.
  • · Vehicles must be registered, plated and insured.
  • · No passengers under the age of 8 and the number of occupants are limited to the number of available seating positions.
  • · Have full lighting on (headlights and taillights) between sunset and sunrise or when the weather is unfavourable.
  • · If the posted speed limit is 50 km/h or less the limit for the ORV is 20 km/h
  • · If the posted speed limit is greater than 50 km/h the limit for the ORV is 50 km/h