There’s a new set of rules off-road vehicle riders need to be aware of before heading out into Powell River’s backcountry this fall. Starting Sunday, November 1 all off-road vehicles operating on Crown land must be registered with license plates or registration stickers.
“Registration will help combat vehicle theft and promote responsible use,” Steve Thomson, minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations, stated in a media release.
All riders are required to wear helmets and children must be supervised. Lights must be used during periods of low visibility and up until 30 minutes after sunrise or before sunset.
Since November 2014, the province has had a voluntary registration system for the vehicles which include: quads, dirt bikes and side-by-sides. Snowmobiles have been registered in BC since the 1970s.
“A lot of volunteer time, effort and expense in working with government on this initiative,” Erin Hart, president of BC Snowmobile Federation stated in a media release. “We are pleased the new regulations are being implemented and look forward to working closely with the government to further enhance snowmobiling.”
Snowmobile owners who have already registered under the Motor Vehicle (All Terrain) Act are eligible for a refund up until November 16, 2015, when they register under the new regulations.
Over 35,000 off-road vehicles have been voluntarily registered, but the provincial government estimates there may be as many as 200,000 in BC.
For off-road vehicles unable to house metal number plates the government has created a sticker. Operators who wish to exchange the plates for a sticker can do so without charge until the end of the year. An $18 fee will be charged in 2016.
The off-road vehicle registry is tied into the existing Insurance Corporation of BC (ICBC) system. The one-time sign up can be completed at anywhere Autoplan insurance is sold. The combined cost of the number plate and registration fee is $48.
For more detailed information on requirements to register off-road vehicles, readers can visit ICBC’s website: icbc.com.