SAFE SPECTATING – SMART & EASY
Off highway recreation is fun for the whole family. Lasting memories and relationships can be created when sitting around the campfire telling stories about past adventures, challenges overcome, and the excitement of our sport.
Desert racing and rock crawling are competitive sports for both professionals and amateurs alike. Events are generally on public land and with few exceptions access to watch those races are open to the general public at no cost. Often just getting to the event can be an adventure in itself due to the remote locations.
Knowing where to camp, what resources are available, and what rules are in effect at your chosen location are important to a safe experience. Facilities may be scarce or non-existent, and access to emergency services might be difficult should someone in your party get hurt. Furthermore it is essential to understand what federal, state, county, local, and Native American laws apply to the specific land that you will be on while spectating an off-road event.
“Safety is an extremely important aspect of off-road racing, and spectators must be keenly aware
of themselves and their surroundings when attending VORRA sanctioned events.”
Valley Off Road Racing Association
SAFE SPECTATING RULES
DISCLAIMER: Off-Road Spectator endeavors to provide accurate and up-to-date information while fostering a culture of safe spectating. You are ultimately responsible to know the laws and rules for every event you attend. Off-Road Spectator accepts no liability for the use or misuse, or errors and omissions of information provided herein. No warranty or guarantee is provided or implied. Use of any information provided is at your own risk.
Each event will have unique rules and conditions that change every year. The following rules are common to all off-highway vehicle events on public lands. For venue specific information click on any event in the UPCOMING EVENTS section.
- Do not put yourself in a dangerous position at any time. Be aware of your surroundings and look out for others around you.
- Keep your eyes and ears open at all times. Some race vehicles travel at speeds in excess of 100 MPH. Things happen quickly, often in bursts, and then there might be periods of relative calm.
- Stay 150 feet back from all desert racecourses. The racecourse plus 150 feet on either side is closed to the public on race days.
- At desert races, do not position your viewing location to be at any corner or turn in the racecourse. Racers frequently overshoot corners due to high speeds, and also send roost (rocks, boulders, dirt, mud, debris) in all directions when changing directions.
- At rock crawling events, due to the frequency of rollovers, do not position your viewing location below an obstacle, or anywhere that gravity could send the wayward vehicle.
- Do not enter the event course for any reason. Stay behind all barricades, fences, and traffic control barriers.
- Do not let children play around or on the event course. Children must be supervised at all times.
- Keep all animals on the leash at all times. Better yet, leave your pets at home.
- Dirt bike, quad, and OHV play is prohibited during events.
- At all times give careful attention to directions from race officials, local and federal law enforcement, and emergency responders.
- Pack it in. Pack it out. Pick up and carry out your trash!
- Be prepared for the environment. Cold, heat, wind, and rain are all possible at off-road events. Even snow. Dress in layers and be prepared to seek shelter if the weather changes suddenly.
- Have plenty of food and water.
- Use common sense.
- Speak up if you see situations or people behaving unsafely. Call them out. Tell the kid to get back from the course even though he’s not your kid. Inform people about the danger when they are sitting too close. It’s your responsibility to make a difference.
“The future of this race depends upon your cooperation.”
Best In The Desert
NOT SAFE SPECTATING
The following video is an example of what NEVER to do.
In the U.S. this person could have been arrested for felony reckless endangerment, a felony because a deadly weapon – the vehicle – was involved in his negligence, which in many states caries a maximum sentence of 7-years in prison and $15,000 restitution. Should his actions have caused an unintentional loss of life during the commission of an “inherently dangerous” felony, it would be treated as first degree murder carrying a maximum sentence of life in prison in most states.
This spectator risked his life and the lives of everyone around him, including the children in the video. Any vehicle moving at high speed that tried to avoid him could have careened into the crowd, injuring and possibly killing many.
The crowd also has a responsibility to speak up and shame this person to stop his risky behavior. If you see stupid or dangerous behavior make sure to call the people out. After all, these people are going to ruin it for you too. Your actions will dramatically impact many people and set an example for the next generation of off-road spectators.
“YOU MUST BEAR THE ULTIMATE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR PERSONAL SAFETY
AND THAT OF YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS.”