Motorcyclists, Off-Roaders and Boaters – Why they are at risk


With motorcyclists, off-roaders and boaters expected in large numbers this long weekend, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is raising awareness of behaviours and contributing factors that are common in deaths across all three of these seasonal recreational driver/user classes.

(All data applies to 2018 in OPP-jurisdictions):

Driving too fast for the conditions (7), excessive speed (6) and alcohol impairment (5) were the top contributing factors in last year’s 36 motorcycle deaths. Seven (7) of the deceased motorcyclists were not wearing a helmet.

More than half (10) of last year’s 19 deceased off-road vehicle drivers were also not wearing a helmet. Alcohol and/or drugs were involved in at least eight (8) of the fatalities. Losing control (7) and driving too fast for the conditions (4) were the top driver actions reported in the deaths.

On the water, 22 of the 24 people who died in last year’s boating/paddling incidents were not wearing a life jacket. With falling overboard (11) and capsized vessels (7) being the top primary causes in the deaths, life jacket use may have reduced the number of boating deaths significantly. Alcohol and/or drugs were involved in at least eight (8) of the fatalities.

“This long-weekend, we can all contribute to the safety on our roads, trails and waterways by never operating a motor vehicle or boat while impaired by alcohol and/or drugs. Our personal and public safety relies on each and every one of us obeying the speed limit, driving in accordance with weather, road and trail conditions, and ensuring the use of helmets when riding a motorcycle and/or ATV and a lifejacket while boating.” – Thomas Carrique, Commissioner, Ontario Provincial Police

“Summer is a great time of the year to be outside and enjoy everything Ontario has to offer with your friends and family. Be sure you put safety first this season. ATV riders and motorcyclists should wear proper protective gear, while boaters need to ensure they’re wearing the correct life jacket. Whether on the trails or on the waterways, be sure you respect the rules this summer.” – Sylvia Jones, Solicitor General


The OPP Marine Program is partnering with the Canadian Safe Boating Council for Safe Boating Awareness Week (May 18-24, 2019).



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