Authorities crack down on illegal ATV use

Posted: Updated:
YAPHANK -

Authorities are cracking down on illegal ATV use in Suffolk County.

News 12's Holli Haerr rode along with crews from several agencies as they patrolled Southaven County Park in Yaphank.

ATVs are not permitted on public land in Suffolk County. Art Pendzick, the deputy director of the Suffolk County Park Rangers, says using ATVs in off-limit areas like the Pine Barrens is not only dangerous, it can be bad for the environment.

When riders are caught, the penalties they can face are serious, and can include criminal charges. First offenses often result in fines, but additional convictions could mean days in jail, losing their ATVs and steeper fines.

In addition to patrols, the county has installed fences and barricades throughout wilderness areas to block off some of the trails riders use. But as fast as the fencing is put up, officials say people come along and rip them down.

Authorities say riders should only take their ATVs to places where it is legal.

Pendzick says police have seized 1,200 illegal ATVs over the last 15 years. They used to be sold at auction, but now they're mostly destroyed.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."