Exploring the world can immediately get you on your feet and start the engine. Why? It gives you the chance to unwind after a week or month’s worth of work. But apart from the relaxation and fun that goes with it, never lose sight of a very important priority – your safety.
In this article, we’ll help you gear your bag with the essential items to take with you, whenever you’re about to go off-roading with your buddies.
- 1 WHAT ARE SOME COMMON OFF-ROADING SAFETY HAZARDS?
- 2 WHAT ARE SOME COMMON INJURIES SUSTAINED IN OFF-ROADING ACCIDENTS?
- 3 WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT SAFETY ITEMS TO BRING WHEN OFF-ROADING?
- 4 WHAT ARE SOME GENERAL OFF-ROADING SAFETY TIPS?
- 5 POSSIBLE FAQS
- 6 CONCLUSION
WHAT ARE SOME COMMON OFF-ROADING SAFETY HAZARDS?
Nothing beats the thrill of being one with the breath of nature during off-roading. However, just like any other activities, it also has safety hazards you should be aware of, so you don’t get caught off guard.
Some of these are:
- Having a flat tire
- Going over rough and steep terrains
- Crossing the river or murky waters
- Getting lost
- Getting stuck
- Having insufficient supplies
WHAT ARE SOME COMMON INJURIES SUSTAINED IN OFF-ROADING ACCIDENTS?
There are many off-roading accidents that also include ATVs. As a matter of fact, in 2015, there were 136,700 ATV-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments. Of those injured, nearly one in four were children younger than 16 years old.
Accidents can still happen no matter how hard you try to avoid it, and with it comes the possibility of being injured. Here are the most common injuries you could expect from an off-roading accident.
- Fractures – bone breakage due to extreme impact
- Contusions – bruises caused by high impact
- Abrasions – lacerations or cuts from sharp objects
WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT SAFETY ITEMS TO BRING WHEN OFF-ROADING?
It’s all fun and games until something bad happens. Since nobody wants to turn a joy ride into a disaster, here are the most important items you must never leave home without.
First Aid Kit
One of the things you must always have is a first aid kit. Yes, it’s something that you may even rarely use at home, since it’s meant only for emergency cases. But you’re increasing the chances of using it, once you get out there. This is because accidents can happen anytime.
Make sure you have a sufficient stock of band aids to seal off unexpected cuts or bruises, when your ride gets tough. In terms of hand sanitizers, opt for alcohol over a gel sanitizer because it dries quickly and doesn’t leave a sticky feeling.
Communication is a crucial factor for survival, when you’re in the middle of nowhere. Since you can’t always use hand signals to get your message across to your fellow 4x4ers, purchasing your own CB radio can help you easily contact your friends, by the time you got yourself stuck and need quick assistance, regardless of the distance.
Plus, what’s good about a CB radio is it’s user-friendly in a way that you no longer have to be technically trained how to use it and it doesn’t need a license to be operated. 4x4ing on a jeep and wondering what kind of CB radio works for you? Check out our 5 Best Jeep CB Radios for Off-roading.
Of course, what’s a trip without any food at all? Sure, you won’t be able to enjoy five-star gourmet dishes while you’re anywhere out of your comfort zone but eating something that’s adequately satisfying, is more than enough to help you last for more hours or days in an unknown territory, should the unexpected occurs.
With this being said, you should always have a supply of food packs that you can eat in a snap. This is because if you suddenly ran out of food or don’t have any, you can’t just simply munch on any fruit or plant you see in the wild, as some of them can be poisonous.
Getting an off-road jack is also worth your time and effort. An off-road jack is a valuable 4×4 recovery tool because it helps your vehicle get unstuck by raising it from the ground. It has various lifting capacities depending on its type and purpose.
But one thing that makes an off-road jack a remarkable companion during a 4×4 recovery scenario, is the fact that you can also use it as a winch for pulling your vehicle towards a safe spot, sometimes making a separate winch automatically unnecessary.
In some instances when an off-road jack isn’t enough to get the 4×4 recovery task done, a winch always comes in handy for getting your vehicle out of deep mud, sand or snow.
Although winches are classified into two main categories; the manual and electrical, the latter is the one that’s commonly used on vehicles because of its incredibly huge and safe pulling capacity that’s both needed during worst-case scenarios. However, bear in mind that outcomes still vary depending on whether you have a rope or wire cable and how you use it.
The hands can only take so much; from controlling the steering wheel, changing tires to holding a wire cable. With the many things you have to do, your hands sometimes feel sore or numb. Because of this, see to it that you bring a reliable pair of off-road gloves to protect your hands from such abuses.
As a matter of fact, off-road gloves are not only useful for reducing the effects of stressors on your hands but also helpful when handling sharp objects that can cut through your skin like, splintered wire cables. If you want to buy off-roading gloves but are unsure of your hand size, click here.
Another safety feature that you shouldn’t neglect is wearing off-road goggles. Off-road goggles looks like a simple accessory at a glance. But the truth is, it prevents fatal collisions as a result of blurry or impaired vision, due to the harsh elements that may come your way.
There are a number of factors to consider when selecting off-road goggles. However, foams and lens types are mainly prioritized because they easily determine the user’s comfort level and security preference.
Encountering a fire problem at home is also possible when you’re on your ride. This can be due to gas leaks brought by damaged pipes. Another potential cause of fire is when your 4×4’s exhaust pipes are clogged with dust, water, etc., which eventually makes the engine overheat.
Because anything can happen in the blink of an eye, it’s also important to carry a fire extinguisher wherever you go because a burning, long-term investment is something you’d never want to witness. But you can’t just bring any kind of fire extinguisher because it should contain an approval seal indicating it passed the safety standards.
When it comes to tool kits, you don’t have to bring every item from your repair shop or garage. Once you’re outdoors, just bring only those that’ll be extremely useful when your 4×4 suddenly has a mechanical or electrical failure.
Basic items like screws, wrenches and hammers, are a must when you need to tighten or loosen certain fixtures. If your door becomes jammed with no way of getting out, a utility knife or a glass breaker should always be ready.
Last but not the least is to include tie-down straps. Tie-down straps are valuable because they prevent your important items’ unnecessary movements. This ensures nothing slips out of the cargo area, where either missing or damaged valuables are a common problem, due to a very bumpy ride.
Be warned though that not all tie-down straps have a uniform load limit which means you have to be fully aware of those you possess, lest you end up breaking them.
WHAT ARE SOME GENERAL OFF-ROADING SAFETY TIPS?
Now that you know which items make you safe during the trip, we’ll give you a brief walk through on how to dodge possible hindrances you may come across off the road, as a bonus feature. Peek here for the complete guide.
- Do I need to plan my route?
- Plan your route to ensure your safety and you won’t get lost.
2. Is it important to know my vehicle?
- Knowing your vehicle helps you identify its strengths and weaknesses.
3. Should I be conscious of my surroundings?
- Being conscious of your surroundings meant you’ll be alert and prepared for potential dangers.
These are the items to bring and strategies to keep in mind in every off-roading activity. The unexpected knows no time and place but having these wherever you are, sets you at ease because they make you prepared for it, even if you come face to face with danger. Share us your experiences by commenting below.