MASON-DIXON RIDERS ASSOCIATION
Greene County, Pennsylvania

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MOTORIZED SPORTS SAFETY
2-Wheels || 4-Wheels || Youth Safety & Training || Area Hospitals & EMS || Beware of!

2-WHEEL VEHICLES:   "What a day for a ride," you think to yourself. What you should be thinking, though, is "Is my ride ready for the day?" ~~ Got three minutes? First do a check for the following to insure your next ride is truly a great ride:
  1. Tires and wheels ~~ Since these are where you and the road meet, they're probably the most important things to look over. A problem can affect handling—sometimes severely.

    Are your rims free of dings? Are your spokes tight and straight? Check pressures in both tires. Since most manufacturers specify pressures for cold tires, this is the only accurate way to check them, as they heat up quickly on the road, raising the pressure. Consult your owner's manual or call your tire manufacturer's hotline for the proper pressures for your particular bike.

    If you own multiple bikes, it may be difficult to remember all those different tire specs. And since this is one of those critical things you should check often, you may want to make a small card—like our list—with each tire's recommended pressure, then hang it on your garage wall, or anywhere that's handy.

    While you're down there checking the tires, make sure you've got plenty of tread. You should have more than 1/16 of an inch, about the distance between Lincoln's head and the top of a penny. Remove foreign objects that may have lodged in the treads, and make sure there aren't any cuts in the tire. A scuff is nothing to be worried about, but if it's a deep scratch, you might want to have it checked.


  2. Controls and Cables ~~ A snapped throttle or clutch cable can leave you on the side of the road, so check 'em. Operate anything connected to a cable and make sure that levers and cables feel smooth and don't bind. Apply the front brake and push the bike forward. The brake should feel firm, and the front wheel should not move. Check the rear brake in the same fashion.


  3. Lights ~~ Seeing and being seen are two great ways to avoid unwanted incidents on the road, so making sure your lights work is key.

    Start by turning on your ignition. Are the headlight's high beam and low beam working? Does the taillight come on? Does the brake light come on when you depress the brake pedal and lever? Check left and right turn signals, front and rear. Remember that the cause of a malfunction here could be a relay or bulb. Lastly, don't forget to check your horn.


  4. Oil and fuel ~~ Running out of gas is a bummer, but since many motorcycles don't have gas gauges, it's a very real possibility. Check the gas level in the tank, and be sure your fuel petcock isn't on "reserve," which could leave you with a nasty surprise if you roll to a stop thinking you've still got gas in reserve. And don't forget to reset the tripmeter every time you fill up.

    Running out of gas can be inconvenient, but running out of oil can turn your bike into an inert display of public art. Even some new bikes can use enough oil to be down a quart between oil changes, so check it before every ride.


  5. Chassis ~~ Though an improperly adjusted suspension may not seem critical, imagine your surprise as your bike behaves differently in the middle of a curve because you forgot to reset it after picking up your friend last night.

    Sit on the bike and rock it, making sure that everything moves smoothly and relatively slowly. If the front or rear end behaves like a pogo stick, a trip to your trusty mechanic should be in your immediate future.

    If you have an adjustable suspension, remember to read your owner's manual and adjust it properly for the load you'll be carrying and the type of riding you'll be doing.


  6. Kickstand and centerstand ~~ The kickstand is a handy little item—it's what keeps your motorcycle off the ground. Make sure it's not cracked or bent. Check the spring or springs. Are they in place, and do they have enough tension to keep the kickstand safely up?

    Don't forget to look at the engine cut-out switch or pad, if so equipped.

If everything's in place and operating properly you're done, and you're good to go. Enjoy the day.

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4-WHEEL VEHICLES:   ATV SAFETY & TRAINING ~~ ATV riding can be a risky sport. Before you ride, learn how to properly use all the mechanical controls and safety devices of your vehicle. Read your owner's manual. Most importantly, take a safety course before riding.

Safety Tips:

  • Wear a helmet and eye protection at all times and other protective clothing suitable to the environment.
  • Do not carry passengers on your ATV.
  • Do not let young or inexperienced riders operate ATVs without training and supervision.
  • Do not use alcohol or other drugs when you ride.
  • Learn proper riding skills from an instructor or qualified rider and practice such skills before riding.
  • Always maintain a safe distance between riders. Tailgating can lead to collisions and injuries.
  • Ride with others and let someone know where you are riding. Never ride alone.
  • Obey the laws.
  • Stay on trails designated for ATVs.
  • Be informed of local weather conditions and dress and equip yourself appropriately.
  • Know the area you are riding in. Be aware of its potential hazards.
  • Always ride at a safe and responsible speed. Know your abilities and don't exceed those levels.
  • Make sure your equipment is in top working order; check before heading out.
  • Carry a map of the trail or area you intend to travel.
  • Use common sense.

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Reporting Accidents:

If you are involved in an accident that results in the injury or death of any person, or property damages to the estimated amount of $100 or more, you must report the matter in writing within seven days to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Forestry, PO Box 8552, Harrisburg, PA 17105. It is a violation of the Snowmobile/ATV Law not to report an accident.

If involved in an accident, you must stop and give your name and address, the name and address of the owner of the vehicle and its registration number to the other person(s) involved in the accident or to a police officer.

Accident forms are available upon request from the Snowmobile/ATV Section, Bureau of Forestry, Bureau of State Parks and State Police stations.

You can be held liable for injuries or death or damage to property resulting from the negligent use of your vehicle.

 

Where to get training:

Inexperienced riders are much more likely to be involved in serious accidents. Always read your vehicle's owner's manual and all warning labels. DCNR oversees a training and safety program for ATV riding. It is recommended that all new users of ATVs take an approved safety course before riding their vehicles. Those successfully completing an approved course will be provided a safety certificate.

DCNR authorizes the training of safety instructors. For more information on a safety instructor near you, call DCNR's Bureau of Forestry at (717) 783-7941.

DCNR has approved the safety course offered by the ATV Safety Institute (ASI), a nonprofit division of the Specialty Vehicle Institute of America (SVIA) formed in 1988 to implement an expanded national program of ATV safety education and awareness. ASI's primary goal is to promote the safe and responsible use of ATVs, thereby reducing accidents and injuries that may result from improper ATV operation by the rider. For more information call the ATV Safety Institute at 1-800-887-2887.

 

YOUTH SAFETY & TRAINING:  Each year, hundreds of youth are involved in ATV accidents, some resulting in death

Youth Safety:

While riding these vehicles is fun, it also can be very dangerous. Because of a child's leg and arm length, hand size, and strength, it is often difficult for children to properly control an adult-sized vehicle. Children driving ATVs should always be under the direct supervision of a responsible adult.

No child under the age of 10 is allowed to operate an ATV on public lands.

 

Keep in mind:

  • Children often emulate parental behavior; set good examples.
  • Children often underestimate the danger and risk because of inexperience.
  • Children often overestimate their skill level.
  • It is mandatory that all youth ages 10-15 take an approved ATV training course if they are planning to use their vehicle off of their parent's or guardian's property.

Youth Training:   For information on youth training, call DCNR's Bureau of Forestry at (717) 783-7941, or the ATV Safety Institute at 1-800-887-2887

Click here for links to other safety information:

ATV Golden Rules:

  • Take an approved training course. Call toll-free 1-800-887-2887
  • Ride an ATV that’s right for your age. The guidelines are:
  • Age 6 and older – under 70cc
  • Age 12 and older – 70cc to 90cc
  • Age 16 and older – Over 90cc
  • Supervise riders younger than 16 years of age.
  • Always wear the right safety gear, especially a helmet.
  • Never carry a passenger.
  • Always avoid paved surfaces. Never ride on public roads.
  • Ride only on designated trails and ride responsibly.

AREA HOSPITALS

West Virginia
University Hospital

(Ruby Memorial)
Medical Center Drive
Morgantown, WV 26506
304-598-4000

Monongalia General Hospital
1200 JD Anderson Drive
Morgantown, WV 26505
304-598-1323

Washington Health
Greene County

Bonar Avenue
Waynesburg, PA 15370
724-627-3101

Washington Hospital
155 Wilson Avenue
Washington, PA 15301
724-225-7000

9-1-1 EMS
911 or 724-627-4911
Waynesburg, PA 15370
24-hr Non-Emergency
call: 724-852-2911

  • Other Pennsylvania Hospitals

  • Other West Virginia Hospitals

  • Area Fire Departments

  • Greene County Emergency Services

  • BEWARE OF!!
    (Click on images for more infomaton)

    POISON IVY ~ Safety Message:

    image of poison ivy leaf

    Click on image for more information

    Poison ivy is found throughout the State, primarily on drier sites often in association with oak and sometimes near the edge of fields of along fence rows. It has 3 waxy dark green leaflets that are lighter and more fuzzy on the underside. It grows as a woody shrub or vine that climbs up trees. Poison ivy produces a white berry that persists from fall through the winter. ~~ message from the U.S. Dept of Agriculture.


    click image for Smokey's website
    Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires!!

    forest safety message

    HOGWEED ~ Safety Message:

    image of Hogweed plant

    image of Hogweed plant

    Click on either image for additional information


    The plants thrive in many habitats but do particularly well where the soil has been disturbed, such as on wasteground or on riverbanks, where erosion combined with a good supply of groundwater provide ideal conditions. The plant, a member of the cow parsnip (Apiaceae) family which includes the humble carrot, has a base of large foliage surrounding the main stem which can grow to a height of 15 feet (5 meters). The small white flowers and seed pods radiate out from the top of the main stem and form a distinctive white canopy. This is similar to, but much larger than, the flowering heads found on the Common Hogweed.

    The growing season starts in late March, with full height and flowering being reached in late June and July. It is at this time that the plants are at their most impressive, and dangerous...

    The sap from the leaves and particularly the stem is highly toxic and contact with the skin can lead to severe scars. Contact with the eyes can lead to temporary or, in some cases, permanent blindness. The sap renders skin photo-sensitive which means that exposure to sunlight following contact causes blisters and burns. If you do come into contact with the plant, and especially the sap, you are advised to wash the affected areas immediately, keep them out of direct sunlight and seek medical advice.

    SNAKE ADVISORY ~ Dangers in the Forest and on riding trails:

    image of Northern Copperhead Snake
    Northern Copperhead

    Two poisonous snakes are known to occur in our State Forests although neither is common. These include the northern copperhead and the timber rattlesnake. Anyone who is bitten by a poisonous snake should seek prompt medical attention.

    One of the most distinguishing features of poisonous snakes (pit vipers) is the diamond-shaped head that is well defined from the neck. These poisonous snakes have fangs, and elliptical pupils (as opposed to round pupils in nonpoisonous snakes).

    image of Timber Rattle Snake
    Timber Rattler


     
     
     
     

    WATCH OUT for Ticks and BE AWARE of Lyme Disease ~~ Before venturing out and enjoying the great outdoors, make sure you take some precautions against becoming infected with Lyme disease, a disease transmitted from the bite of an infected tick. The third week of July is designated Lyme Disease Awareness Week but it's always good to take precautions to prevent Lyme Disease.

     Be aware of your surroundings and RIDE SAFE!!!

    Image of ATV riders

    Club Contact:   masondixonriders
    Club Webmaster:   mdra.dkiger@yahoo.com
    Date of last update:   Wed. Aug. 17  21:31:53 2016
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