ATV: The Disaster Aid Vehicle
February 19, 2018
Whether you’re on the west coast, watching for wildfires, the east coast and midwest, fighting the cold, or in the south, wary of continued storms, clean up is an inevitable part of the aftermath of Mother Nature.
But clean up often requires hours of work. How do you expedite the process? If you have access to an ATV or UTV, now is a good time to use it.
Wildfire and Landslide Clean-up
Make sure the proper crews have come in and done clean-up to OSHA standards before returning to your property. Once cleared, double check for downed lines and electrical hazards.
If you own a lot of land, the ATV will help you scout area faster to give you an idea of what needs the most attention. Removing things like fallen trees and large debris will be easier with a winch and a hauling attachment, like a small wagon. Cleaning up ash will require a mask, gloves, a shovel, and a wagon to haul the ash out.
Snowstorms can down power lines and fell trees, in addition to creating an impassable path. Snow and tree removal are easily handled by an ATV with the right attachments, like a snow plow, and again, a winch.
If you’re looking to travel on your property while it’s icy, ATV tire chains are a good accessory to have on hand. They’re easy to apply as most ATVs have more clearance between the well and the tire than larger vehicles.
- Lay the chain out with the hook side down to avoid tire damage
- Follow manual instructions for prepping and securing the chain
- Roll over the chain about half way and use the hook to attach to the chain with the snuggest fit
- Don’t leave excess chain hanging; remove with bolt cutters
- Drive ¼” mile and adjust if chains shift or become looser
- Get a chain adjuster; we recommend spider bungees for best performance and longest wear
- Do not exceed 30 mph
Severe Storm, Hurricane and Tornado Clean-up
Some parts of the country face storm clean-up several times a year. Debris removal, traveling in standing water and slogging through mud are all part of the aftermath of water and wind-laden storms.
Adorn proper safety gear - at the very least use good work gloves to protect your hands. A shovel comes in handy to clear mud from around buildings (which can lead to mildew and wood damage). Several attachments for the ATV make it easy to stow various tools while traveling from location to location, whether you’re on an acreage or just taking care of your neighbors. You may need to collect shingles that were blown off, move rock, or use a chainsaw.
If there’s been flooding, you’ll likely have to remove items from your home so they don’t start growing mold. An ATV/UTV can help transport smaller items from place to place as needed, especially if there’s still a good deal of standing water. You may need to create barricades with sandbags or remove them from their stored location.
No matter what you face, go prepared, and be safe!