Canadian police on Monday warned of rising snowmobile deaths this winter season due to excessive speeds, drunkenness and a disregard of safety rules.
Already, nine people have died in Ontario province, the nation's largest and most populous, compared to seven last season, said the Ontario Provincial Police.
AdvertisementThe latest fatality was a 43-year-old man who struck a snowbank east of Toronto on Saturday and was hurled head first into a tree. He was pronounced dead at hospital.
National fatality figures were not available.
But also on Saturday, a snowmobile crashed with pick-up truck near Winnipeg in western Canada, landing both drivers in hospital.
And eight snowmobilers died in an avalanche in westernmost British Columbia province last month.
Sergeant Michael Price, Ontario Provincial Police off-road safety coordinator, said snowmobilers should "maintain a reduced speed when operating your snowmobile on or off trails, drive according to conditions, wear your helmet and don't mix snowmobiling with alcohol."
Police would be patrolling trails, roads and frozen lakes to ensure compliance to safety rules, he said.
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