Four snowmobiling deaths reported in four days
MADISON (WMTV) – Four snowmobile deaths in the past four days have more than doubled the number reported in January, new DNR numbers show. Last week, after the first two of the four deaths occurred, bringing the total at the time to five, the agency warned riders about the number so far. Two more since Friday pushed the total this month to seven.
The first two in this latest series both happened on Thursday when a 59-year-old woman rearended another snowmobile in her group, near Phelps, in Vilas Co. That same day, a 57-year-old man died after his snowmobile was hit by a pickup truck when he was crossing a road, in Oneida Co.
The next day, another rider, 41, died in Oneida Co. when he missed a curve and crashed into a tree, DNR reported. The final one happened on Sunday, when a 54-year-old man also did not take a curve properly and hit a tree in Arbor Vitae, Vilas Co.
All four crashes are still being investigated.
Last Thursday, when the number of riders killed in snowmobile crashes for the month reached five, the agency put out reminders for people to ride safely.
“We strongly urge snowmobilers to operate within their abilities, keep their speed in check and wait to enjoy adult beverages until they are home,” DNR Off-Highway Vehicle Administrator Lt. Jacob Holsclaw said.
The DNR urges snowmobilers to be safe and responsible while on trails, routes, and frozen bodies of water. Never drive a snowmobile when impaired by drugs or alcohol, and always operate within the limits of your snowmobile and your skills and visibility.
The DNR’s snowmobiling website has information on snowmobile safety classes, regulations, safety tips and registering your snowmobile.
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