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Aaron Gross

Colonel Aaron Gross

Director, Massachusetts Environmental Police

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With the winter’s snow and brisk weather comes an abundance of outdoor activities to enjoy. Whether you are fishing, snowmobiling, skiing or hunting, remember to make safety your top priority.

Our officers are outdoors this winter across Massachusetts using four-by-four vehicles, ATVs and snowmobiles to patrol off-road areas and operating a fleet of vessels to patrol coastal and inland waters.

Year after year, we see tragic recreation accidents, so I am urging everyone to take some simple precautions while enjoying the winter weather.

Here are some winter safety reminders:

  • Always wear a U.S. Dept. of Transportation-approved helmet when operating a snow machine, dirt bike or off highway vehicle. 
  • When operating recreation vehicles, ride at reasonable speeds for existing conditions and be especially cautious when operating at night. 
  • Never operate recreation vehicles under the influence of alcohol. 
  • Check frozen ponds and rivers before going onto the ice – be aware of soft spots in places where there are currents or natural springs below the ice, and exercise extra caution when temperatures creep above 32 degrees F. 
  • Dress in layers and wear waterproof outerwear. 
  • Pack water and first aid supplies with you before venturing outdoors. 
  • Remember kayak and canoe operators must wear a life preserver from September 15 through May 15 as cold water temperatures can cause hypothermia.

Enjoy all that nature has to offer this season and be safe.

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