SAFETY

Shift in policy will allow ATVs and UTVs in National Parks

Sep 30, 2019, 1:16 PM
Canyonlands National Park (PHOTO: Courtesy of Shutterstock)
(PHOTO: Courtesy of Shutterstock)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Those visiting Utah’s five national parks may soon encounter the unwanted noise of ATVs and UTVs traversing the roadways.

The National Park Service announced a shift in policy that will allow ATVs and UTVs with proper safety equipment to access roads and backroads starting Nov. 1.

The move does not allow for vehicles to venture off road. Motorists who do so will be cited.

The Salt Lake Tribune has reported the change in policy will impact Canyonlands and Arches National Parks, while it remains to be seen if the other three national parks in Utah will notice an impact.

Some have already voiced concerns about the move; general safety being the most pressing.

“You have five rangers at Arches [National Park],” explained Patrick Shea, former director of the Bureau of Land Management. “And you have over ten-thousand visitors on some weekends.”

Additionally, he’s worried about visitors being angry about the noise.

“It creates a real risk, and it does disrupt the quiet solitude that attracts overseas visitors to the United States,” said Shea.

For context, ATVs and UTVs have been allowed in Utah’s 44 state parks for around 10 years.

Those involved in the oversight of that program say minor issues have surfaced.

“Most of the riders and operators of those street legal ATVs and UTVs do want to adhere by the laws,” said Chris Haller, Utah Off-Highway Vehicle Program director.

As far as national park understaffing, he said there is help available.

“We have what’s called off-highway vehicle program trail hosts,” explained Haller. “Those are volunteers who actually provide extra eyes and ears on the ground.”

Today’s Top Stories

Safety

Rabies in bats....
Waverly Golden

Utah health officials confirm three cases of rabies in bats

Three cases of rabies in bats have been confirmed in Utah. In each case, pets or humans were exposed and received treatment.
14 hours ago
...
Mark Jones

Suspect taken into custody after firing shots in Kearns

A shelter in place was issued Wednesday evening in Kearns after an 18-year-old male fired a weapon at a family member fled the scene through a residential area.
2 days ago
Police car sirens....
Mark Jones

Two people are in critical condition following two-vehicle car crash

Washington City Police report two people were injured following a two-car crash Wednesday afternoon. The crash occurred around 4 pm.
2 days ago
Lina Reyes Geddes, of Youngstown, Ohio, has been identified as the victim in a 1998 homicide cold c...
Mark Jones

Garfield County cold case homicide is brought to a close

Authorities in Utah and Ohio announced Wednesday the closure of a Garfield County cold case that dates back to April 20, 1998.
2 days ago
A father and son shop for fireworks in Herriman, Utah...
Samantha Herrera

Tooele fire prompts reminder about firework safety

Illegal fireworks started a fire in Tooele, Utah Tuesday night. Officials reminded Utahns to light fireworks safely and legally this holiday weekend.
2 days ago
High water in the Gardiner River along the North Entrance to Yellowstone National Park in Montana, ...
Curt Gresseth

Be ready for flash flooding: Expert shares advice

An expert with the Utah Division of Emergency Management shares his expertise and crucial tips on how to be ready for flash flooding when you are in a vehicle or at home.
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Tax Harassment...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
Follow @ikeyospe...

Tax Tuesday: The Most Common Mistakes People Make When Filing Their Taxes

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.
Follow @ikeyospe...

Tax Tuesday: How will last year’s child tax credits affect you?

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.
Shift in policy will allow ATVs and UTVs in National Parks