ATV patrols to enforce non-motorized areas

Off-road vehicle users are being encouraged to help protect wildlife habitat by staying out of sensitive ecosystems, or risk consequences.

Map from 2007 Morice Land and Resource Management Plan.

Off-road vehicle users are being encouraged to help protect critical wildlife habitat by staying out of sensitive ecosystems such as wetlands, streams, grasslands and alpine areas, or risk enforcement actions.

Under the Forest and Range Practices Act it is illegal for people to cause environmental damage on Crown land, said Brennan Clarke, Public Affairs Officer for the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

Clarke says that those who cause damage to an ecosystem, such as damage caused by motorized vehicles, may face enforcement ranging from warnings to violation tickets that carry a $575 fine. More serious cases of damage could lead to penalties of up to $100,000 and/or a year in jail.

“Throughout August, provincial natural resource officers will be doing random inspections at known off-roading sites including but not limited to the Seaton Basin meadows, the Hunter Basin Road area and the McKendrick snowmobile trail from Dome cabin to Mount McKendrick,” said Clarke.

“The goal of these inspections is to encourage safe and responsible recreation and to educate the public about the rules. The ministry takes non-compliance very seriously and natural resource officers will be looking for individuals and groups that are not adhering to the rules and regulations.”

Clarke continues:

“Irresponsible off-road vehicle use in alpine, grassland or wetland areas can disturb soil and destroy plants, risk watershed and water source quality, threaten or kill birds and animals, and introduce invasive plants that displace native vegetation that wildlife rely on.

“The public is encouraged to help protect essential habitat by operating off-highway vehicles only on managed and designated trails and roads, and never building new trails.

“While travelling on a Forest Service road, operators of all-terrain vehicles are required to hold a valid driver’s licence, carry a minimum of $200,000 third-party liability insurance and wear safety helmets.

“The public is asked to report suspicious activities and environmental damage to authorities, including a local forest district office, the Report All Poachers and Polluters Program at 1-877-952-7277 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.”

ATVs have left trails of wrecked alpine on the non-motorized area of Morice Mountain. The east side of Morice Mountain is non-motorized, and Frank McDonald, non-motorized representative on the 2007 Morice Land and Resource Management Plan, says it is part of only two percent of the Morice district area which is non-motorized.

Just Posted

More BC Transit stops possible in Houston and area

But prospect hinges on financing by local governments

CT scanner to aid Houston and area patients

Scanner approved for Bulkley Valley District Hospital in Smithers

Hike across Western Hemisphere passes through Houston

By the time he had reached Houston, Holly Harrison was walking on… Continue reading

Houston RCMP to crack down on distracted driving

A Houston RCMP officer just recently finished a specific training program to… Continue reading

Houston Health Centre receives donation for a CT scanner for the Bulkley Valley

Debi Smith, Author of ‘Running from Cancer’ decided she would donate $1… Continue reading

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Canucks find scoring touch in 5-2 win over Blackhawks

Four Vancouver skaters have two points apiece in victory over Chicago

‘Not well thought out:’ Arizona family slams B.C. speculation tax

American family spends half the year in vacation home on Vancouver Island

Family of B.C. wildfire victim wants better emergency preparedness for vulnerable people

Williams Lake’s David Jeff “fell through the cracks”

Senate backs bill to legalize recreational marijuana

Justin Trudeau reminded senators that his government was elected on a promise to legalize pot

Where Canadians buy real estate abroad: report

Hot Spots: Top 30 home-buying destinations for Canadians in the Americas

Ban on grizzly bear hunt, new rules take effect April 1

Taxidermists, tanners will have to report on any grizzly bears or parts brought to them

Ontario father grief stricken over murder of ex-wife and children

‘No words to explain,’ grieving father of slain teens says in statement

Most Read