So far this winter, snowmobilers in Saskatchewan have had even odds of breaking some rules.
During the holidays, RCMP who were out patrolling the trails and checking in with sled enthusiasts had less than stellar numbers of unregistered sleds being operated.
It was revealed in a release that about 50 per cent of snowmobiles pulled over were not registered. The fine for failing to plate a sled is costly, at $175 per sled operating without registration.
Sergeant Jeremy Knodel, of Combined Traffic Services Saskatchewan, said in the release that not everything was bad news.
"This also means 50 per cent of snowmobiles were registered – so credit to those who registered before they went out on the trails,” says Knodel.
Last year, between 85-90 per cent of snowmobiles encountered out on the trail were registered.
"There’s lots of winter left and we’re hopeful that 50 per cent can be bumped up to meet or exceed what we encountered last winter season," Knodel continued. "Our teams are working to keep people safe on the roads and on the trails so everyone can enjoy this seasonal activity.”
For those wondering where you can register a sled, you can do it at any SGI-licensed issuer. Registration is required for operation on public roads (where allowed), ditches, other highway rights of way, provincial parks, Crown land, designated snowmobile trails or on rivers or lakes.
Folks are reminded that while smaller and less traditional, snowmobiles are still motor vehicles. Driving them while impaired is a serious offence, netting offending parties a minimum fine of $250.
"We want everyone on the trails to enjoy them safely and part of this is enforcing no alcohol or drug use," said Knodel.
Riders can tell if RCMP are out riding with them if their sleds are flashing with the same blue and red lights that cruisers can be seen with. If a sled pulls up with flashing lights, simply slow down and pull over to the side of the trail like you would in a regular vehicle.