The state's top recreational safety person says being smart with an ATV or UTV this deer hunting season is essential.
The vehicles have proven to be an increasingly popular with hunters.
The DNR's ATV safety administrator Gary Eddy says operators might run into paths that they aren't used to taking....
"....their going to come across obstacles like stumps or steep terrain and loose gravel or leaves that they're not expecting. Safety is of utmost importance...."
He says even if in the woods, hunters should wear helmets. Eddy says sometimes hunters get lax about wearing helmets. He says a low-hanging branch could do serious damage to a person without a helmet. Another reminder is to keep the deer rifle unloaded as you head to your hunting spot.
He says hunters sometimes overload the ATV....
"....when there are too many people on it in areas that cause instability with handling or they successfully harvest a deer and then try to transport it out either on the front rack or the back rack of their ATV again. It causes some instability and we've seen some rollovers with that...."
He says roadway use is highly restricted. Make sure the road has been legally open to ATV travel by local authorities. Open roads are marked with "ATV Route" highway signs.Eddy also says sure you know who maintains the land you would like to use and if ATV/UTV operation is allowed.
More information is at the DNR website.