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ISP to host off-road safety event in Pocatello


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POCATELLO — After last month’s successful motorcycle safety event, Idaho State Police are continuing the theme with the Pocatello OHV Safety Fair this weekend.

Related | First annual Shiny Side Up Motorcycle Rally a success, organizers say

The event, which takes place Saturday at Prime Time Auctions on South 5th Avenue in Pocatello, will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and feature training in off-road safety and etiquette.

“People get hurt,” ISP Corporal Travis Gurney told “We lose lives each year to someone doing something on a four-wheeler or ATV that could have been preventable – either by safer operation, simply wearing a helmet or being better educated.”

Like the Shiny Side Up Motorcycle Rally, the Pocatello OHV (off-highway vehicle) Safety Fair will bring together a litany of knowledge. Representatives from ISP, Bureau of Land Management, Idaho Transportation Department, Department of Parks and Recreations, Bannock County Search and Rescue and the U.S. Forest Services will be in attendance. So will nonprofit organizations that work on and maintain local trails.

“There is going to be a lot of good people who are going to be able to answer safety questions and provide tips on safety as well as trail etiquette.,” Gurney said.

Etiquette, Gurney said, is an important part of enjoying off-road recreation. Attendees will learn about the damage that can be done by those riders who create their own trails. Gurney also mentioned the importance of learning how to ride around horses.

There will be opportunities to learn how to properly pack trailers and campers.

“You’ll be able to take your camp trailer across that scale and see what the weight is — the distribution on each axle — and know better how to prepare to go camping and travel on the interstates safely,” Gurney said.

ISP troopers and off-road experts will offer information like restrictions on different types of off-road vehicles and how to properly approach trails.

According to Gurney, a lifelong dirt bike rider, these types of safety events have been missing from east Idaho. Parks and Rec., he added, has been doing similar events in Magic Valley for a decade, and has also been offering off-road safety courses for years — courses Gurney had never heard about until last year.

His hope is that this will become an annual event, growing each year in both support and attendance. But he is tamping his expectations for the first one, saying, “it’s just about getting it rolling.”

“We’ll see what we get here, with this one,” he said. “If I get one person that shows up and goes through the course, I’ll be ecstatic — if they go through and get everything signed off.”

People who show up this year will not only be able to mingle with ISP troopers, and discuss outdoor safety, they will also be able to visit with vendors representing the area’s outdoor recreation scene — including Klim and Pocatello Power Sports, among others,

“It’s something for the community,” Gurney said. “We want to show, ‘hey, we care about you guys, we want you to go out and have fun and not get hurt.’”