Consumer groups weighs in on ATVs in Salem roads

atv-sxc-Michal-Zacharzewski-webA national consumer group has sent a letter to members of the Salem Town Board arguing against allowing all terrain vehicle use on town roads.

Last month, about 40 residents showed up at a Town Board meeting to support allowing ATV use on town roads. The board was receptive to further consideration, perhaps at the May Committee of the Whole meeting.

The letter from the Consumer Federation of America was dated May 1 and was supplied to westofthei.com by Michael Best, policy advocate for Consumer Federation of America.

“ATVs should not be driven on public roads because driving ATVs on public roads is more dangerous than operating them off-road, ATVs are not designed for roadway use, and ATV manufacturers have policy statements strongly urging consumers not to operate their vehicles on public roads,” Best said in his email message to westofthei.com.

Melva Stockwell, the Salem resident who spoke in favor of establishing an ordinance to allow ATV use on town roads, said she felt it would be better to regulate than to allow ATV use on the roads to continue outside of the law.

The entire Consumer Federation of America letter to the Salem Town Board is available here.

3 Comments

  1. E. Hill says:

    What this boils down to is that every day and every night, all of our neighborhoods will be taken over by these loud machines. As it is, I call the police on a regular basis because of these beasts. Think about it – what roads have speed limits of less that 35 miles per hour? OUR NEIGHBORHOODS! There will be no limits to the times that the riders will be able to ride them, which will mean the revving and the ripping will be constant and continuous. Had I known that this request was on the agenda, I would have had many people down there at the meeting to object. Mike Culat’s comment ‘I didn’t realize there were this many people in Salem who were interested in this” is both terrifying and confusing. Does he live in the town? This is NOT Bong park. I do NOT want more of this on my road. The rate of speed and the damage they cause on a regular basis is astounding. So Melva STOCKWELL feels that we should REWARD the riders who are operating outside of the law by giving them our roads just outside our homes, our lawns, where we would like to come home from work and rest and relax? Let us allow them to race up and down, making as much noise as they can instead of going to the park trails that were created FOR THEM? NOT A CHANCE. I want my neighborhood back from the ILLEGAL OPERATORS – I don’t want to give it away legally to more loud people who can’t find anything better to do during the day and night that race around on All Terrain Vehicles like restless cowboys – after all, that is what we keep seeing on DUCK DYNASTY so we should just do it to, right?
    No, our STREETS ARE NOT FOR THESE DANGEROUS machines.

  2. E. Hill says:

    What this boils down to is that every day and every night, all of our neighborhoods will be taken over by these loud machines. As it is, I call the police on a regular basis because of these beasts. Think about it – what roads have speed limits of less than 35 miles per hour? OUR NEIGHBORHOODS! There will be no limits to the times that the riders will be allowed to ride them, which will mean the revving and the ripping will be constant and continuous. Had I known that this request was on the agenda, I would have had many people down there at the meeting to object. Mike Culat’s comment ‘I didn’t realize there were this many people in Salem who were interested in this” is both terrifying and confusing. Does he live in the town? Does he not see them in driveways, covered in mud? Perhaps he would like to come spend Sunday afternoon at my house and go for a walk with me and my dogs and I will point out all of the damage ATV’s and dirt bikes can and will do. Our residential neighborhoods are just those: neighborhoods: NOT Bong Park or other state parks. These people own All Terrain Vehicles and simply do not have the acreage to make use of them. This is neither Salem’s problem nor responsibility in any way.
    I do NOT want more of this on my street or in my neighborhood. The rate of speed and the damage they cause on a regular basis is astounding. So Melva STOCKWELL feels that we should REWARD the riders who are operating outside of the law by giving them our roads just outside our homes, our lawns, where we would like to come home from work and rest and relax? Let us allow them to race up and down, making as much noise as they can instead of going to the park trails that were created FOR THEM? NOT A CHANCE. I want my neighborhood back from the ILLEGAL OPERATORS – I don’t want to give it away legally to more disrespectful people who can’t find anything better to do during the day and night than race around on All Terrain Vehicles like restless cowboys – after all, that is the sort of WILD FUN we keep seeing on DUCK DYNASTY and all those ‘red neck reality’ shows, so we should just do it too, right? What is next – no shirt, no shoes, no problem? Salem needs to continue to thrive and rise above this sort of destructive and messy element. Whatever ‘ATV CLUBS’ that do exist, are not going to magically appear and start bringing revenue to the town. ATV riders are not like Snowmobile riders, and yes, I DO KNOW what I am talking about and YES, when I come to the meeting on July 21 I will be bringing evidence to support all of this. The request to turn town roads into TRAILS is simply an excuse for the people who are currently already breaking the law and most likely have been either pulled over by the police and stopped or had complaints filed against them for riding through people’s property to avoid FOLLOWING the laws and ordinances. Streets are NOT trails.
    No, our STREETS ARE NOT FOR THESE DANGEROUS machines.

  3. E. Hill says:

    Sorry, it seems I double posted, but I had to add more to my comment as I read it on my screen. The mere thought that the board would even CONSIDER this is still so shocking to me that I can’t get over it. I have to go under the assumption that they have never heard the racing of ATV’s down their street at all hours of the day or night. They have never experienced that very distinct rumbling sound a particular type of ATV makes and then looked out their window to see a line of ATV’s rolling down the street, leaving MUD TRAILS behind them – probably never tried to walk their dog and had their dog pull away in fear as the ATV comes OUT OF NOWHERE. The are ALL TERRAIN, after all.

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