Snowmobile safety crackdown

A number of fatal snowmobile crashes in the Adirondack Park has police cracking down with sobriety checkpoints, and trying to get a message through to snowmobilers.

Posted: Feb 19, 2019 6:16 PM

"They’re coming at you like a 60mph bullet." Town of Webb Police Chief Ronald Johnston is just one of a small number of police officers trying to curb the number of fatal snowmobile accidents in the Adirondacks. It’s a big task for such a small amount of people, but they're taking a steps to curb the accidents by monitoring the trails.

"The majority of these fatal accidents can be avoided, and could have been avoided, if people would just keep their speeds down, and stay away from the alcohol until they’re done riding for the day."

Alex Bassey owns a camp in Big Moose, but tells us he and his family don’t go out on sleds after dark. He’s seen numbers of snowmobilers go out riding after drinking, and is afraid the trails have become too dangerous at night.

"People are going to do what they want to do whenever they want, and if one place closes down or doesn’t serve, they’re just going to the next one, and then that bar or that restaurant will do better than the one that was throwing everybody out. It’s a game. You know in the winter time up here income is scarce so nobody wants to shut down."

Sara Shanahan is the Owner of the Big Moose Station. It sits right on a main trail, so people can ride right up and have lunch and a drink. She tells us they’ve taken a proactive approach to keep riders from drinking at night.

"It’s a little different for those establishments that have rooms. They still need to be conscious of overserving and also ID-ing people as well. However for us, due to the fact that we’re just a bar and restaurant and not a hotel, we have chosen not to open late night for that reason."

Sara tells us most of the establishments try to be responsible about serving, and that everyone benefits when they do. There is one more thing they can do to help police cut down on the fatalities. The Town of Webb does have a small police agency, but they’re trying to get their message to the snowmobiling community with coasters with one simple message: Zero alcohol, your smart choice. 

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2373659

Reported Deaths: 54904
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings31693410717
Queens30446810139
Suffolk2263213507
Nassau2057483244
Bronx2012496686
New York1607744600
Westchester1403622327
Erie984751879
Richmond853091901
Monroe775831154
Orange54237887
Rockland50600768
Onondaga45436707
Dutchess33589483
Albany28239368
Oneida25527541
Niagara22005382
Broome21557384
Saratoga18312186
Ulster16239271
Schenectady15162214
Rensselaer13180154
Putnam1176595
Chautauqua10796155
Oswego9496100
Chemung8956144
St. Lawrence8774115
Ontario846496
Steuben8285156
Cayuga7828100
Sullivan776581
Jefferson737071
Wayne686877
Cattaraugus667596
Genesee6017127
Herkimer5937116
Tompkins588959
Clinton558534
Madison533897
Fulton523297
Livingston514066
Montgomery5023133
Cortland478369
Warren464676
Columbia4608107
Tioga436867
Chenango414886
Otsego413051
Allegany398192
Greene391983
Wyoming388454
Washington387061
Orleans358983
Franklin344415
Lewis315936
Delaware301740
Seneca244459
Schoharie205420
Essex192929
Yates138126
Schuyler126416
Hamilton4073
Unassigned12529
Out of NY0288
Utica
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 61°
Oneonta
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 59°
Herkimer
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 61°
Old Forge
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 61°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
NEW Game Day Deals each week
Follow the 2021 Go the Distance Team - sponsored by Gilroy Kernan & Gilroy
Chapter Photofacial Therapy Giveaway
Looking for work or looking to hire? Check out the WKTV Job Fair!
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve