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We don't often get political here on Seattle Sports Blog but this one has really got me going...

A certain group is supporting a new Senate bill, in Washington State, that essentially outlaws riding any sort of motorized off-road vehicle within 10 feet of a residence/residential area - within a certain decibel level. The catch is that it is so broad that if you and I build a motorcross track in our backyard in BFE and then 5 years from now, someone builds a home nextdoor, we have to close our track down - so they can have "peace & quiet". This isn't right and there is a rally this Friday in Olympia. We hope this helps get the word out for those riders who can take a little time to head down there and let people know that this is the most offensive law ever written against ORV (Off Road Vehicles) and passing bills that screw everyone else but oneself is not a way to operate with one's fellow citizens.

Here is a link to the rally flyer:

When one of the supporters of the bill was asked "why" he supported it, here is what he wrote (below). Not exactly the most logical, yet it is very biased, experience of ORV riders & riding:


TO: Senator Adam Kline
FROM: Dave Helgeson (Possible Non-Constituent)

Senator Kline,

I am curious to know why you would co-sponsor the most discriminatory, anti-OHV Bill ever proposed?

-WOHVA (Washington Off Highway Vehicle Alliance)


I signed on because I have been annoyed, endangered, and angered one too many times by people riding motorized dirt-bikes and other off-road vehicles that have no damn business anywhere. To me, this bill is narrow--it doesn't include those "personal watercraft," seemingly jet-powered little missiles whose only apparent purpose is to risk death and dismemberment for boaters and swimmers, for the amusement of spoiled drunk teenagers.

Yes, I am sure there is the occasional responsible person who rides one of these machines on land or water. And yes, like every human being I have been pleasantly surprized to find my stereotypes broken. But why, why, why, do folks insist on motorized "sports"? Those two words are an oxymoron. There is nothing sporting--athletic, physically demanding--about riding any machine anywhere. And it's a damned annoyance to folks who see the outdoors as a place to go for quiet and solitude and self-exploration. I would be happy to ban the use of the internal combustion engine off-road, by anyone without a handicapped sticker, subject to a stiff fine. Maybe we could call this an anti-obesity measure.

Please circulate this to all motorized sports enthusiasts, so they can remember never to vote for me.

A. Kline


The Washington State Legislature is currently considering drastic changes to the offroad vehicle noise laws.

The proposed changes would include creating maximum sound levels for riding near any residence, regardless of where that residence is located or how it is zoned. It would become illegal to ride if your bike is either plainly audible or exceeds 45 decibels from inside of, or with 10 feet of any residence. This would even include residences that are on farm land, forest land or in an industrial area. It would also be illegal to ride if your bike exceeds 55 decibels at the property line. The fine for this new crime would be a minimum of $100, going up to a maximum of $800.

These new limits would only apply to your dirtbike or quad. It would not apply to other, more common sources of residential noise such as lawnmowers, chainsaws, cars, trucks, boats, airplanes, stereos, playgrounds, ball fields, etc. It is just plain discrimination against ORV use and has nothing to do with keeping neighborhoods quiet.

If this becomes law, forget about riding any track in the State of Washington. Also, you can count on the vast majority of riding areas shutting down.

You can find additional information on this subject at

Contact your State Senator and two House of Representatives members NOW!
Let them know what you think of this discriminatory piece of legislation.

Find them on the web at

Or send them a phone message using 1-800-562-6000


  Posted by: SSBG | Permalink | Comments (0)
  March 5, 2007 4:08 PM
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