A local outdoorsman is giving his support to new fines for off-road vehicle users caught in sensitive habitats.
The BC Government announced Tuesday they were instituting $575 fines for any off-road vehicles caught in sensitive habitats like BC Parks and southern mountain caribou habitats.
Doug Williamson is both the President of the Kootenay Rockies ATV Club and vice-president of the Cranbrook Snowmobile Club.
He says his groups should have no issues with the increased fines.
“There are a few bad apples that think that when they are out on their snowmobiles, that its the wild west, they’re going to be an outlaw and they’ll do whatever they want to do,” Williamson says. “If it takes much bigger fines to get their attention, so be it. Maybe that’s what it’s going to take.”
He says both groups recognize the importance of protecting these areas.
“We worked with the Ministry for many, many years to protect our Lumberton snowmobile area and there were areas that used to have caribou. This is going back 30 years ago,” Williamson says. “We made agreements as best as possible and we have kept our end of the bargain.”
Williamson says he’s surprised to see protection for caribou habitats being increased so late in the game.
He says ungulates in the southern mountain caribou habitat were moved to Revelstoke for better protection due to dwindling numbers.
– Doug Williamson, Kootenay Rockies ATV Club President – Cranbrook Snowmobile Club Vice President