Local News

Jan 3, 2010 5:09 PM by Stacy Daniel

New rules for off road riders at the Oceano Dunes

For those heading to the Oceano Dunes for a little outdoor recreation, there are some new safety regulations you'll want to know about.
The rules for off road riders just got a bit tougher.
Effective January 1st officers have the authority to cite adults for allowing children to operate an oversized off-highway vehicle.
New safety regulations require that children riding an OHV alone, must be able to reach and operate all controls entirely by themselves.
Grover Beach Resident, Mike Limon says,"Parents got to be responsible for making sure the kids are safe."
The riders KSBY talked with give the new regulations the green light.
Grover Beach Resident, Mike Limon says," Putting a kid on a off road vehicle without the safety equipment is like putting them behind the wheel of a car in the street. It's endangerment. It's almost child endangerment."
They are also cracking down on reckless driving near campsites and charging higher fines for repeat offenders, tracked by the DMV.
That's something that rider, David Forstren says, will help keep people safe.
Forstren says,"Inexperienced drivers, they don't know how to read the dunes, they fall off and get hurt."
All off-highway vehicles must also carry a flag in the dune area to help riders spot each other. Forstren adds," When you're coming up a hill you'll have no idea that there's somebody coming if they didn't have that flag. Without the flag there would be a lot more accidents."
The new safety regulations at the dunes are meant to keep people from getting hurt and ensure that the 5 and a half miles of beach remains open for vehicle use.
People who are opposed to operating vehicles on the beach say no matter how many new laws are passed it won't keep from dying at the dunes. At least six people have died at the Oceano Dunes in the last two years.

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