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CORPORATION OF THE COUNTY OF GREY COMMITTEE REPORT CCR-TAPS-38-10 TO: Chair Barfoot and Members Transportation and Public Safety Committee FROM: Heather Morrison, Deputy Clerk/Records Manager MEETING DATE: May 6, 2010 PURPOSE: To Review a Request from the Dufferin Grey All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) Club to Establish a By-Law to Permit ATVs on Certain portions of Grey County Roads RECOMMENDATION(S) WHEREAS a request has been received from the Dufferin Grey ATV Club to permit ATVs to ride on certain portions of Grey Roads 4, 12 and 13 on a seasonal basis; AND WHEREAS under the Highway Traffic Act, Section 191.8, in order for municipalities to permit ATVs on municipal roads, a By-law must be passed by Council; NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the County of Grey permit ATVs on certain portions of County roads of Grey Roads 4, 12 and 13 on a seasonal basis provided the following conditions be met: • The Dufferin Grey ATV Club covers a certain portion of the costs associated with the necessary repairs and upgrades to the shoulders of the requested County roads and that this cost will be determined by the Transportation and Public Safety Committee; • Any damage to the County road allowances caused by ATV usage shall be remedied by members of the Dufferin Grey ATV Club and be restored to the original condition, subject to the satisfaction of the Grey County Transportation and Public Safety Department by October 15, 2010; • A risk management assessment be completed by a qualified person from the Ontario Federation of All Terrain Vehicles (OFATV) prior to ATVs being CCR-PCD-38-10 1 Date: May 6, 2010 Status: Approved by Committee May 6, 2010 Resolution referred back to TAPS Committee by County Council June 1, 2010-see CCR-TAPS- 44-10 and By-Law 4673-10. permitted on the above noted County roads; • That riding takes place only between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 9:30 p.m. AND THAT the appropriate By-Law and Land Use Agreement be brought to County Council for approval. BACKGROUND At the April 22, 2010 Transportation and Public Safety Committee, a request was received from the Dufferin Grey ATV Club to permit ATVs on certain portions of Grey Roads 4, 12 and 13. Seasonal approval has been given for 2008 and 2009 via resolution to permit ATVs on these roads from May 1 to November 30. This permission was temporary and requests needed to be made on an annual basis for consideration. However, in the 2010 request, the Club requested that the County pass a By-Law permitting ATVs on the above noted roads. The County, in the past, has not passed a By- Law, but rather given temporary permission for ATVs to use certain portions of Grey Roads 4, 12 and 13 via resolution, endorsed at County Council. Questions arose from Committee members regarding what impact the passing of a By-Law would have on the County’s insurance costs. Therefore staff was directed to bring back a report outlining legal and insurance ramifications of passing a By-Law to permit ATVs on certain portions of Grey County roads. As cited in TAPSR-51-05 (a report written to discuss liability and insurance concerns relating to allowing ATV use of Grey County roads) as per Ontario Regulation 316/03 – Ontario Highway Traffic Act – Operation of Off-Road Vehicles on Highways, a municipality has the option to pass a by-law permitting ATV use of public highways under its jurisdiction. The Ministry of Transportation website states that “Municipalities can determine which roads, where on the road, time of day, and season that Off-Road Vehicles (ORVs) are allowed access. They can also set speed limits that are lower than those set out in the regulation. If a by-law does not exist, ORVs are not allowed access to that municipality’s roads.” Given this information, if the County were to approve the use of ATVs on any portion of Grey County roads, a by-law would be required under the Highway Traffic Act, Section 191.8. In consultation with the Frank Cowan Company, the County’s current insurer, they suggested the County take into consideration whether ATVs will be permitted on all County roads or certain County roads only. As well, it must be determined how this information will be given to citizens as well as ATV users. They also stated that if a by-law is passed, the roads affected will need to be maintained taking into consideration the needs of the ATVs as well as other vehicles going forward. As previously noted in TAPSR-51-05, the County's previous insurer, OMEX, had concerns regarding granting such permission relating to the potential liability exposure in ATV-related CCR-PCD-38-10 2 Date: May 6, 2010 Status: Approved by Committee May 6, 2010 Resolution referred back to TAPS Committee by County Council June 1, 2010-see CCR-TAPS- 44-10 and By-Law 4673-10. incidents resulting in serious injury or death. OMEX referred to the difference in speed that vehicles versus ATVs would be travelling on the same roadway. That insurer also raised the issue of the need to consider increases to shoulder width on various County roads, as narrower shoulders would require ATVs to ride closer to vehicular traffic and would therefore increase the possibility of collisions. OMEX also spoke of the additional costs associated with increased maintenance and signage along the shoulders. Another point the Frank Cowan Company made was that ATVs can run virtually year-round and if the County also has bike lanes or has any on-road running or cycling races during the summer months, the ATV group/users will need to be advised of any road closures for races, special events, re-routing of traffic. FINANCIAL/STAFFING/LEGAL/IT CONSIDERATIONS Frank Cowan Company stated that there would be no premium impact if such a By-Law were enacted. They also provided the County with a sample By-Law should that be the direction given to pursue. It should be noted that as issues with ATVs arise on municipal roads across the Province, insurance premiums for all municipalities may see increases. Costs may be involved to bring shoulders of the roads to standards to manage ATV traffic. Assuming that it is a sectional activity, roads should be maintained and constructed with this use in mind. The cost of this would be approximately $5,000 per km. County roads are considered arterial roads and thus have more traffic, travelling at greater speeds than municipal roads. This increased traffic volume and rate of speed should be taken into consideration with this request. There may be more staff time and financial commitment involved should a By-Law be passed to ensure that shoulder conditions meet the needs of ATV riders and that regular maintenance of these shoulders is completed to ensure the safety of the riders. A legal opinion was sought and the opinion from the County’s solicitor confirms that permission must be granted by By-Law to permit ATVs on municipal roads as the Highway Traffic Act Section 191.8 (1). There are no IT considerations related to this request. Respectfully submitted, Heather Morrison CCR-PCD-38-10 3 Date: May 6, 2010 Status: Approved by Committee May 6, 2010 Resolution referred back to TAPS Committee by County Council June 1, 2010-see CCR-TAPS- 44-10 and By-Law 4673-10. CCR-PCD-38-10 4 Date: May 6, 2010 Status: Approved by Committee May 6, 2010 Resolution referred back to TAPS Committee by County Council June 1, 2010-see CCR-TAPS- 44-10 and By-Law 4673-10.
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