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ATV operators protest ban from public land
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-08-21 03:46 PM
After a late-July incident in which a woman was thrown out of an ATV, resulting in cervical spine injuries, the Forest Service notified the Pingtung Forest District Office to put a stop to people trespassing on public land and driving ATVs on the beach and dunes in the area. On August 20 local police went to the area and put up barriers to block entrances from the roadway, raising howls of protest from business owners renting out ATVs.

A police spokesman pointed out that the beaches in Kang-tsu Village in Pingtung County are all state-owned land, thus ATV riders are trespassing on public land when they enter the area. In addition, the serious injury sustained by the woman who was thrown out of a vehicle shows that the sport can be very dangerous. "You can seriously damage yourself,” said the spokesman, “and that is not a very good thing."

The Forest Service ordered the ban and had fences set up to block off access to the beach area, but some owners in the ATV business have defied law enforcement officers and broken through the fences, ignoring police officers standing right in front of them. Pingtung Forest District Office Deputy Director Lee Yin notes, "These are activities are not legal, and as long as they are not allowed, we will continue to carry out the ban."

The Forest Service points out that encroachment on state-owned land by people driving ATVs constitutes a challenge to public order and also poses a risk to tourists and visitors in the area.

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