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By CJ Rena Johnson

ASI Safety Training: Avoiding Tragedy and Possibly Even Death, One Class at a Time

Always take time to explain things in a way they will understand and make sure they do by asking them to explain it back to you.
Always take time to explain things in a way they will understand and make sure they do by asking them to explain it back to you.

Learning the proper way to go down a steep slope.
Learning the proper way to go down a steep slope.
The same day my Trailblazers Kids Club story came out in this magazine, a little 7 year-old boy was killed on an ATV a few miles down the road from where I live.

I was enthusiastic about doing this story and getting this information out before then, but that horrible tragedy just reinforced within me the urgency of this message and the direct need for more ATV safety and awareness nationwide, especially where children are involved.

Children do not understand the often-severe consequences that are possible with any sport, especially a motorized sport of any form, and they definitely are not aware of how to prevent it. Even if they were aware of it, would they have the maturity and comprehension to insist on safety training before they do something as fun as climbing on their own or their friend’s new ATV and taking off across the yard and possibly the street? Not any of the children I know, and I wasn’t when I first started riding. Therefore, it is the adults’ responsibility to make sure their children (and any other kids riding their ATVs) are prepared BEFORE they are allowed to climb on and hit the gas! How can they do this? Being prepared themselves is the best way.

The thing about ASI safety training is that more often than not, it is FREE for the participant! Most ATV manufacturers offer a certificate when you purchase your new ATV for free ATV Safety training!
This training is available all across the nation and is accessible with very little planning. So if something this simple, inexpensive, and FUN can save a life, what is to prevent anyone from taking it?

Quite often, it is a lack of awareness, or over-confidence, or just irresponsibility, or procrastination on the part of the responsible adult. Yes, accidents do happen and there is no guarantee even after taking the course that tragedy will not strike, but if there is something you can do to prevent it, is it not worth whatever effort it takes to try?

How can you access this safety training? The simplest way is to go to www.atvsafety.org. There you will find everything you need to know about the ATV Safety Institute and the rider safety program. That site also offers safety tips for everyone young and older and has fun things such as quizzes to test your current knowledge of ATV safety. You can also call 1-800-887-2887 to find the ATV Rider course nearest you.

What will take place during this training? There are many points of interest covered in each course and they will vary slightly depending on the instructor and the type of class you take. However, almost all of them will cover the following subjects.

  • Controlling your ATV
  • Going Uphill and Downhill
  • Traversing Hillsides and Slopes when you can’t go straight up or down them
  • Correct Riding Posture & maintaining center of gravity
  • Turning in different situations
  • Getting over obstacles

The instructors will usually go over safety gear as well and touch on such subjects as what to do if there is an accident and sometimes even how to operate different kinds of ATVs in an emergency situation.

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