The Walker area’s last ATV Safety Training Class of the year is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19. It is a cooperative effort of the Walker Area Community Center (WACC), Walker-Hackensack-Akeley School District, Cass County Sheriff’s Department and the Woodtick Wheelers ATV/OHM Club. The class will be held at the WACC, 105 Tower Avenue, Walker. The classroom instruction and written test starts at 9 a.m., followed by the riding portion of the class.
This ATV training class is for operators ages 11-15. Students who are age 11 may take the complete course, but the certificate will only become valid when they reach their 12th birthday. Students who complete this course are able to operate ATVs with these restrictions: The operator must fit the machine; must make a direct crossing of a public road right-of-way; and operate on state lands and waters, only when accompanied by a person 18 or older who has a valid driver’s license. Operating along or on a public road right-of-way is not permitted with this certification. However, a new Minnesota DNR regulation, in effect as of Aug. 1, 2013, allows youths who have completed all safety training to operate an ATV in the ditch while accompanied by a parent or legal guardian on another ATV.
Adults who are new to ATV riding are also encouraged to take the class. The Minnesota DNR reports a rise in the number of injury accidents among older adults who are riding ATVs for the first time.
Class requirements: Prior to the class, students must complete the DNR’s independent study ATV CD-ROM, and bring a certificate of completion to the class. CDs are available at the WACC, the One Stop in Longville, or by calling DNR Enforcement Safety Training Office at 800-366-8917. Those attending the class must provide their own ATV, wear long pants, long-sleeve shirt, gloves and boots (no tennis shoes) and bring a helmet with goggles or face shield. Parents must sign a parent release form, and are encouraged to help with the class.
Preregistration is required. To register, contact Gretchen Gribbon at the WACC at 218-547-1853, or Lloyd Solarz with the Woodtick Wheelers at 218-682-3775. Please note: students will not be allowed to participate in the field operating class unless they have first completed the CD-ROM written test. Upon successfully completing the testing and operating portion of the course, students will pay the DNR’s $15 course fee and print out their certificate on the DNR website. Certificates will be issued to anyone who has traveled from out of state. Older riders may also take the riding portion to obtain a certificate, sometimes required of hunters using ATVs in western states.