vonny17

Hand Signals

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This past week end I passed many groups and a lot of them were trying to give a hand signal as to how many were in there group. Some of them were on the pipe line trail where you can see for a 1/4 mile. One guy tried to tell me there were 10 sleds behind him by raising both hands. I have an idea. Forget the hand signals and keep your hands on the handlebars where they belong. Telling someone that there are 3 sleds behind you means nothing to me. Half the time there are more than three sleds behind them and they don't know it. Everyone should drive as if there is always a sled coming the other way around the corner. The lights are no better because they don't know whats behind them anymore than the guys giving hand signals. Lets abandon the signals and drive safely and correctly. Don't look for any signals from me.


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That's exactly why I switched to the LED green/yellow lights. Never regretted it either.


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That's exactly why I switched to the LED green/yellow lights. Never regretted it either.

Yeah, but the OP makes a good point. The folks showing that there's no one behind them don't always know that there's a 12-sled parade behind them This idea worked when there were very few sleds on the trail, but on heavy-use trails has limited value.

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I still use a "hand signal" especially when some yahoo is side ways in a turn with his ass end on my side if the trail.... Oh ..your talking about other hand signals :)

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I appreciate knowing what is coming from the other direction, especially on a curvy trail. I do maintain a safe speed because you never know what's around the bend, but any info from other riders is a benefit and a courtesy.


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When you take 1 hand off the handlebars you are at 50% control and probably a lot less at that . Both parties may need 100% control especially if something happens. You always need to stay in control. How many times do you see hand signals being given on a corner or when someone is beginning too start loosing control. Surely I do not like to see youngsters using hand signals and I do not teach using hand signals at the OHRV Safety Classes.


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I agree with Catreserve and don't agree with using hand signals. I also teach to NOT use hand signals on the trails, leads to many accidents every year. Just keep the hands on the bars and RIDE!!


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Not using signals, except if you're on my side of trail, & not puttn on any lights. Don't care who is behind you & people don't even know how many are following. Plenty about this on HCS gen. forum.


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I think using hand signals is a good idea as long as your doing it in a safe manner. Its nice to know how many sleds are in your party sometimes thats not always the case because there are alot of sleds on the trail that day.


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I was a big user of hand signals until I bought CSS lights for our two sleds. Now I wouldn't go without the safety lights and now only wave to friends.


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I think using hand signals is a good idea as long as your doing it in a safe manner. Its nice to know how many sleds are in your party sometimes thats not always the case because there are alot of sleds on the trail that day.

I agree. Similar to what Bearcat250 also stated... On a tight, curvy, thickly wooded trail it's very helpful.

At the end of the day, we're all trying to help each other to make it a safer ride.

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Keep your hands on the Bars Fish and Game doesn't use then and you shouldn't either Rick has the best idea that's a ride light so hate it when people use hand singles telling you there the last one yes maybe in your group but what about the 10 sleds behind you. Everyone would be safer keeping there hands on the bars. People are all out of control using hand signals,see it all the time


Edited by WICKED

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The only time I find them helpful is coming around a blind corner, in this case it's great to know more sleds are coming. On a strait away they are pointless as I can see what's coming. I used to use them all the time, but now a days I prefer to keep my hands on the bars.


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I agree with Catreserve and don't agree with using hand signals. I also teach to NOT use hand signals on the trails, leads to many accidents every year. Just keep the hands on the bars and RIDE!!

Not trying to be an ass, but how many accidents have been caused by people using hand signals in the last couple of years?

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Don't know about accidents, but I know that many times each year I have to move over to avoid being hit by someone signaling about following sleds that I can see anyway.


Edited by Old Thumper

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They've been using hand signals for as long as I can remember and now suddenly there is a problem? If you can't take your hand off to signal how many sleds are in your party then maybe your going too fast?? Just a thought


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I forgot I had this email reply which I received from Major Acerno back in 2007. At that time I was a hand signal advocate and was questioning why the conservation officers I saw on the trail never used signals. I stopped using signals when I started riding with gauntlets, but now even without gauntlets the only time I might signal is if I had a following rider that was not in sight. Signaling about riders that are in sight is nonsense in my opinion.


Anyway - here is Major Acerno's advice, and he did give me permission to quote this (see below):



Scott,


Thank you for your e-mail concerning safe, ethical and responsible riding. You are correct in that the Safety Education Classes instruct in the use of hand signals, but that emphasis is changing. The change will be that riders will be encouraged to control their snowmobiles first, and then signal to oncoming riders. We are adopting this change in policy because of the increasing number of snowmobile crashes where the primary contributing factor to the crash was that one or both operators lost control of their snowmobiles while giving hand signals.


Conservation Officers are also seeing an increase in the number of riders who almost strike them when they lose control of their snowmobiles to give a hand signal. The Officers and department are asking that riders be concerned first with controlling their snowmobile.


I even question this because many times while I am riding I will have the last rider in a group signal to me that they are the last rider, unbeknownst to them that another group came up behind them. So as far as I am concerned the rider who signaled me really is not the last rider in line, but they don't look in their mirror to see that someone else is behind me. On a final note, everyone should ride as if another rider is coming from the opposite direction.


I hope this explains the reason why Conservation Officers may seem like they do not care, but in reality they are concerned about responsible and safe riding. You will notice that when they are stopped they will acknowledge you.


Tim Acerno


NH Fish and Game



Thank you for the explanation Tim.


May I quote your response if / when the subject comes up again online?


Or would you prefer that I don't?


Scott



No problems, although I would like you to emphasize that the department continues to promote safe and responsible riding and we are seeing an increasing number of riders who are losing control of their sleds just to signal an oncoming rider. It is my intention to deliver the message that although communication is important it is more important to ride under control.


Tim


Edited by Old Thumper

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I'm still not sure why people use those lights (Green and Yellow). All that means is they know how many are in their group. It means nothing as far as how many are behind them. Lets just promote safe driving and not worry about whose behind you, other than to pull over and let them by.


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Ok I use the CSS lights (green and yellow), but for a slightly different reason.

When you are the lead rider in a group, and everyone between you and the last rider are yellow, and the last rider is green.

Looking over your shoulder, or using sled mirrors, hand mirror on your wrist, seeing one green light amongst all the head lights.

It's easier to know the whole group is there.

The only hand signal I give, is waving my buddy on to pass me and take the lead.

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My 16 year old son rides last with the CSS light. He is very good at watching behind and changing his light. If he wants me to stop, he turns it to blinking yellow. The way i look at it is this way, If you like being signaled to fine, if you don't fine. No harm no foul.


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My 16 year old son rides last with the CSS light. He is very good at watching behind and changing his light. If he wants me to stop, he turns it to blinking yellow. The way i look at it is this way, If you like being signaled to fine, if you don't fine. No harm no foul.

But he never wants you to stop does he?

:sleds:

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Scott, thanks for posting the letter from Tim. I'm done signaling and will press upon kids that it's no longer a needed thing to do...


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I recently used my CSS light on a hilltop trail to warn sleds coming over a hill there was a sled/fire accident on the other side of the hill/trail. The flashing light did it's job in slowing down the riders.


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Scott, thanks for posting the letter from Tim. I'm done signaling and will press upon kids that it's no longer a needed thing to do...

I had completely forgotten about that email until Denny posted in the HCS thread that F&G never use hand signals...

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