Forestry Corporation concerned about motorcyclists safety

Forestry Corporation is appealing to motorcyclists to ride sensibly in State forests and to take notice of signs indicating they should not enter areas where timber harvesting is taking place.

Forestry Corporation resource protection manager based at Bathurst John Whittall said riders should be aware that timber harvesting as well as recreation takes place in State forests and logging trucks use the roads to transport timber.

“Inexperienced riders are at risk if they come across these vehicles unexpectantly,” he said.

“Harvesting signs indicate where harvesting is taking place and riders should not enter there areas as they will be putting themselves at risk of being hit by trees being felled or large machinery.”

He said many people were unaware that if they drive a vehicle in a State forest, including motor bikes and trail bikes, they must be licensed and the vehicle must be registered.

“The same laws apply to State forest roads and tracks as apply to the highways,” Mr Whittall said.

‘Irresponsible use of motor bikes within the forest not only puts forest visitors at risk but also causes significant soil erosion and environmental damage.

“The main problems come from bikes being ridden at unsafe speed or taken onto steep fire trails where wheel spin causes ruts that later wash out and muddy streams during heavy rainfall.”

Forestry staff conduct regular patrols to make the forests safer for all forest users.

Mr Whittall said Forestry Corporation was particularly concerned that there had been a series of motor bike accidents during the past year in the central west region with some occurring in State forests.

“Motorcyclists are encouraged to ride in a safe and responsible manner on formed roads.” Mr Whittall said.

“Through a commonsense and lawful approach a safe and enjoyable forest experience can be achieved for the general public and other forest users.”

Media contact: Sarah Chester on (02) 6036 2110 or 0417 207 669.