On February 4, 2021 members of the Snowmobile Patrol unit attached to the Southern Georgian Bay OPP were on patrol in Tay Township checking riders for impairment, equipment and trail passes/licencing on the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) “C” trail.
At 12:11 p.m. OPP Provincial Constables Hamilton and Anderson attempted to stop a snowmobiler at a R.I.D.E. check stop on the OFSC “C” trail where it stops at Triple Bay Road in Tay Township. The operator of the snowmobile did not stop for the officers and continued to drive away stopping some distance past the check stop. After returning to the check stop and having a brief conversation with the officers, the operator fled the scene on the snowmobile leaving the officers at the R.I.D.E. check stop. Shortly afterwards, the officers where notified by a citizen of a snowmobile that had crashed into a wire page fence at the intersection of Triple Bay Road and Highway 12.
The officers at the R.I.D.E. check stop attended the scene and located a lone damaged snowmobile with no operator matching the one that had fled from the R.I.D.E. check stop moments before. Another member of the public advised the officers of a person in a snowmobile suit with a helmet in hand running on the OFSC trail towards the Hogg Bay Trestle.
Constable Hamilton was able to catch up and arrest the person and through investigation identify the person as the snowmobile operator involved in the snowmobile crash and the failure to stop for the officers at the R.I.D.E. stop earlier.
Charged is Christopher Conner, 26 years of Tay Township, with the following offences contrary to the Motorized Snow Vehicle Act of Ontario.
- Careless driving
- Fail to stop for police officer
- Fail to wear proper helmet
- Disobey sign
- Drive motorized snow vehicle, trail permit not issued
The accused was released from custody to appear before the Ontario Provincial Offences Court in Penetanguishene on April 8, 2021.
Snowmobile operators are reminded that all snowmobile operators shall stop and identify themselves when directed to do so by a police officer.
Snowmobile operators are advised to check trail conditions prior to heading out and the following internet web sites can provide an insight into those conditions and whether the trails are open or still closed; Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs, Mid Ontario Snowmobile Clubs
If you have to travel out onto an ice surface always remember that “No Ice Is Safe Ice” and you need to be aware of current, past weather conditions and commercial ice breaking activity along with checking with area residents who have “local knowledge of ice conditions”. The following web sites are a must see for those who travel on ice surfaces- Cold Water Boot Camp along with https://twitter.com/OPP_News/status/1342817627077488641
Unlawfully removing trail signs can create some very dangerous situations, if you have knowledge of anyone removing OFSC trail signs please contact the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). You can submit your information online at www.p3tips.com. Crime Stoppers does not subscribe to call display and you will remain anonymous. Being anonymous, you will not testify in court and your information may lead to a cash reward of up to $2,000.00. You can follow Crime Stoppers of Simcoe Dufferin Muskoka www.crimestopperssdm.com on Twitter or Facebook.
Police remind snowmobilers that an essential part of the enforcement job is to save lives and reduce injuries on our trails, through community partnerships we educate the public about safe driving practices – #Never Drive Impaired https://youtu.be/gSX_LGoNiHw and enfrancais https://youtu.be/0x8yi_98u8s .