According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission over 600 off-roading deaths happen each year in the United States alone. Imagine how low that number is compared to the number of accidents there are. Tens of thousands of accidents happen all over the country where machines, humans, and the great outdoors are involved.
This subject is very near and dear to the Coral Sand Adventures family. Our business partner was on a tour and had a momentary lapse in judgement and allowed a young woman to drive the vehicle. As he did this, he traded places with her and did NOT put his seatbelt back on. She overshot the corner on a dirt road and flipped twice. She and her friend were strapped in and wearing helmets and only obtained minor scrapes and bumps, along with a slight concussion. He unfortunately was not. Long story short he broke his neck in 2 places, almost tore his ear off, detached his retina. He was in the ICU for 45 days and was in a coma for 5 days. We are one of the lucky ones to have him back without being paralyzed or dead.
Why do I tell you this? Because it is so important especially in an outdoor playground like Sand Hollow State Park sand dunes. We see helicopters, and medical experts all too often out on the trails. The biggest issues are:
- Speed (Slow down. There is no reason to drive like you are a part of the Baja 1000)
- Lack of safety gear. (Make sure to always have your seatbelt/harness on! Wear a helmet!
- Use a whip and flag and at night make sure to have proper lighting.
- Buddy System (This has been taught to you since you were in kindergarten. Never go out into the wilderness alone.)
- Take water. (We are in the desert people! It gets to over 120 degrees and even hotter with the sand)
- Wear appropriate clothing. (To much or to little both can have major consequences)
- Learn hand signals. Ie. You may think the person coming at you is giving you the peace sign while driving however he is actually telling you how many machines are behind him! For example, 4 machines go out in a group. The first machine will hold up 3 fingers, the second machine will hold up 2 fingers (Peace Sign), and the last machine will hold up a fist indicating there are no more machines a part of their group that you will need to look out for. It is also your responsibility to do the same for them.
Just last night a young man of 35 years old decided to go out on a night right on his quad by himself. It was dark and either he jumped or just went out over the edge of our sand mountain and was found this morning having passed away from his injuries.
Coral Sand Adventures would like to wish everyone riding out there a fun and safe adventure. Remember also that it is imperative that if someone is stuck, broken down, or just plain needs help that you stop. You never know when you will be the one to need the help.