Many visitors to Grand County bring recreational-off road vehicles with them. Moab city officials say while they want people to enjoy their time in the community, the negative effects UTVs can have on residents must be accounted for.
“I would like to work with users and impress upon them how impacted our residents are," Tawny Knuteson-Boyd said. "And we don’t hate them, we want them to come and enjoy. We just want our town respected and our residents respected.”
Knuteson-Boyd is a member of the Moab City Council and is working alongside the council and the Grand County Commision to find better solutions for off-highway vehicle problems in the area.
Knuteson-Boyd said Moab has over 3 million visitors a year, and for those who live there, off-road vehicles can cause noise and congestion that impacts their quality of life.
She said she wants Moab residents to be aware that the city council is hearing their concerns and working to mitigate the noise as much as they can. Currently highway speeds for off-road vehicles have been decreased.
Kent Green owns a OHV rental business with his wife called Moab Cowboy Off-road Adventures. He said it’s important to remember Moab is a tourist destination, and many people make a living from that.
“Everything makes noise in Moab. I hear semi trucks, I hear Harley Davidsons, I hear side-by-sides, I hear it all," he said. "Moab sits in a canyon and so you’re going to get that echo of any type of vehicle transportation.”
When people are on an OHV tour, Green said they are taught to stay on trails and be educated about trail etiquette and traffic laws. And while Green said the OHV community is willing to compromise and work with the city residents, he also said the land is public and OHV users have the right to explore the land along with other hikers and visitors.