Snowmobile safety tips

MN DNR Enforcement-Safety/Education

Watch the weather and check trail conditions before riding

Don't ride in adverse weather conditions. Plan your trip and check the trails you'll be riding prior to departure. Check trail conditions and trail maps.

Don't drink alcohol and ride

zero tolerance imageAlcohol is a factor in over 70% of all fatal accidents in Minnesota, as well as many non-deadly snowmobile accidents. Alcohol and drugs have a negative effect on the driver's vision, balance, coordination, and reaction time. Don't ride with people who drink and ride! Minnesota is part of a larger coalition of snowmobiling states that support 'Zero Alcohol' consumption before or during your ride.

Never ride alone

Always ride with a friend on another snowmobile. This way if one machine is disabled, you have another to get help.

photo of an adult and child in full safety gear on a snowmobileDress for safety & survival

Always wear a quality DOT helmet and facemask. Wear layers of clothing to keep warm and dry. Snowmobile suits, bibs, jackets, gloves and mittens should cut the wind, repel water and keep you ventilated.

Slow down

Excessive speed is a major factor in many accidents, especially at night. To help avoid accidents, keep your night time speed under 40 MPH.

Stay to the right

Almost every trail is a "two way" trail. So stay to the far right of the trail, especially on hills and corners. Obey all trail signs and cross roadways with extreme caution.

Stay on the trail or stay home

Trespassing is a major complaint about snowmobilers and can result in trail closure. Always stay on designated snowmobile trails. Venturing off of trails can result in accidents. Only ride private property when you have landowners permission.

Riding on ice - lakes & rivers

It is safest to avoid riding on lakes and rivers. If you must ride on ice, wear a life jacket over your outer clothing. Stay on the marked trail and stay off of ice that has moving water (current) near or under it - ice in these areas may be thin and weak. Ice Safety Information

Take a Snowmobile Safety Training Course!

Designed to educate the student on basic snowmobile operation, laws and regulations, and safety. Go to snowmobile training.