Avoid Snowmobile Related Injuries This Winter With These Tips

On behalf of Peterson, Berk & Cross, S.C.

In the midst of winter, many enjoy taking advantage of the over 250,000 miles of snowmobile trails Wisconsin has to offer. However, snowmobiling can be dangerous if the correct precautions are not followed. According to the Wisconsin Recreational Vehicle Annual Report, in 2019, there were 159 snowmobile accidents in Wisconsin, with 19 proving fatal.

If you or a loved one is a victim of a snowmobile-related injury this winter, it is important you contact a seasoned attorney as soon as possible. Numerous costs that could result from your accident such as medical bills and time off from work surely add up.  There are strict time limits in Wisconsin that establish when you can file a claim.  It is important to talk to an attorney promptly after an injury to make sure you are informed of your rights.

In order to reduce your risk of being a victim of a snowmobiling personal injury accident however, here are some tips, safety precautions and laws you should be aware of before heading out on the trails.

Wisconsin Law Regarding Driving a Snowmobile Under the Influence

Each year, injuries and deaths result from people driving snowmobiles under the influence. The maximum blood alcohol concentration a driver of a snowmobile can have while operating is .08 percent, according to Wisconsin law. You are also prohibited from operating a snowmobile with any amount of restricted controlled substances in your system. By operating a snowmobile on areas open to the public, you have automatically consented to providing a blood, breath or urine sample upon a law enforcement officer’s request.  

Preparation Is Key

Make sure you are dressed to brave whatever weather conditions surface. Wear multiple layers, gloves or mittens and warm boots. Your helmet should be safety certified, and you should use goggles or glasses, and a visor, to ensure you are able to see clearly. Have a friend tag along on your drive so you have extra support in case disaster strikes and arm yourselves with an emergency kit. It is also important to inform yourself on the proper hand signals to effectively communicate with other vehicles.

Obtain Your Snowmobile Safety Certificate

Anyone who is born on or after January 1, 1985 and is at least 12 years old must complete the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Snowmobile Safety Certification course in order to operate a snowmobile in Wisconsin. You must carry this certificate with you while riding your snowmobile and display it to law enforcement if they request its presentation.

You must also ensure your snowmobile is registered. Currently, there are more than 200,000 registered snowmobiles in Wisconsin. If a snowmobile is kept in Wisconsin for more than 15 days consecutively, it must be registered to the state. 

If You or a Loved One Suffer an Injury This Winter

If you or a loved one suffer a snowmobile related injury, or any personal injury this winter, contacting a lawyer is more important than ever. Due to the current state of the economy as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, insurance companies are taking notably aggressive measures to secure settlements that do not adequately cover a victim’s damages. A skilled lawyer will effectively mitigate any impacts of insurance companies’ aim to come out on top, and ensure you receive compensation for the full extent of your damages.

The lawyers at Peterson, Berk & Cross S.C. have a successful track record of winning significant settlements and verdicts for our clients, including numerous multi-million dollar results. We understand that an accident is not something you can prepare for. We are dedicated to alleviating the physical and monetary stressors our clients in Wisconsin face, by informing them of their rights pertaining to their unique matter and obtaining the outcome they hope for. Contact us: (920)-831-0300 or fill out our online contact form.