Summer vacations bring many families to outdoor adventure parks. While ziplining or rafting can present a great risk, it is also important for adventure operators to pay attention to passenger transportation using off-road vehicles.
According to the CDC, many other industries use ATVs for their businesses including: border patrol, construction operations, emergency medical response, search and rescue, law enforcement, land management and surveying, military operations, mineral and oil exploration, pipeline maintenance, ranching and farming, small-scale forestry activities and wild land fire control.
Whether your business uses these vehicles for employee or passenger transport, follow these guidelines:
- Age. All drivers should be at least 18 years old.
- Motor vehicle report. Make an approved driver list. Make of list of things that make an employee ineligible: 2 speeding tickets, one major violation (DUI or suspended license). Check the driving history of every single driver before they are allowed to be on the approved driver list.
- Driving rules and procedures. Make a list of driving rules and procedures that provide an overview of expectations for employees that wish to become part of the approved driver list. You might include things such as:
- Vehicles may only turn around in a designated area. This ensures there is adequate space to make a turn.
- Make sure all passengers of the ATV or UTV have seatbelts fastened at all times.
- If an employee or guest is driving, mobile phones must be placed in a box that is out of reach.
- When traveling down a hill, only low gear should be used.
- Vehicle weight should be distributed evenly. For example, there should be a mix of kids and adults on each side. If all adults are on one side, there is a higher risk of rollover.
- No one should carry heavy items in the front row.
- Training session. Each employee must complete a training session with a manager. The following items should be covered during training:
- Overview of vehicle should be provided, along with functions of each component.
- Employee and trainer should drive the designated route together. Manager should point out areas such as blind spots, crossing areas, rough spots in the road.
- Review of driver rules.
- Review the expectations of the driver.