Keeping Your Young Loved Ones Safe In A Polaris Ranger

Feb 2nd 2020

One of the most surefire things you can do to guarantee the safety of your children when riding a Polaris Ranger is to drive nice and easy whenever they're onboard. But even still, when your youngsters’ lives are on the line, a few more safety measures should be implemented. After all, when you’re out and about in any off-road vehicle, you’re at the whims of Mother Nature, so taking a few extra precautions makes you prudent, not paranoid. Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories like kid-size helmets can protect your youngsters' heads from both bumps and blunt impacts, while UTV car seats and Polaris Ranger booster seats will ensure that your factory or aftermarket seat belts and harnesses perform properly. Your most precious cargo can never be replaced, so taking the extra steps to guarantee their safety and well-being while they tag along is undoubtedly your number-one priority. And with a huge selection of Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories ranging from youth hearing protectors to child-size UTV harnesses, Everything Polaris Ranger is here to keep your young loved ones safe and sound at every moment on the trail.

Using A Car Seat In The Polaris Ranger

Similar to on-road vehicles, Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories like front and rear-facing car seats can also be used to keep your kids safe in the Polaris Ranger. Pretty much any care seat approved for regular automotive use can be ran in a Polaris Ranger, the Polaris Ranger XP, and all other editions of the Polaris Ranger. However, a common issue regarding UTV car seats is that the stock Polaris Ranger seat belts don’t always tighten up enough or remain taut when fully cinched down. You can use a razor knife or something similar to cut the stitches between the seat belt and the flap, which will let you tighten up your child’s off-road car seat just like you can in an automobile. This flap is there to prevent your seat belt buckle from falling into the seat, so removing it doesn’t diminish the strength of the seat belt in any way. Alternatively, you could also drill holes into the flat piece behind the seat and install u-bolts to use the safety belts that the car seat came with.

Ratchet straps can also be used to secure car seats in the Polaris Ranger. Small ratchet straps are able to hook around the mount where the seat belts bolt behind the seat, and there's a clip that comes on the back of most car seats that is meant to lock the seat belts for older cars that don’t have locking seat belts -- which is the perfect place to thread Polaris Ranger ratchet straps trough. Standard car seats with extra padding in the head section are advisable, and you can never go wrong with extra straps to hold the car seat down. But even a Polaris Ranger with a car seat and a full windshield can’t protect your child from dust. So in addition to avoiding bumpy terrain, you should also try to avoid dusty areas when riding with your young children on board. And if dust is unavoidable, Polaris Ranger full cab enclosures, goggles, dust masks, and even fresh air pumper systems can be installed.

Using A Booster Seat In The Polaris Ranger

Like car seats for babies and riders under the age of two, Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories like Jr. seats and booster seats can also be installed for kids too big for car seats, yet too small to ride safely using the stock Polaris Ranger seatbelt. The right age-appropriate Polaris Ranger seat will make all the difference where safety is concerned. You want something that will elevate your child's posture enough so that the factory seatbelt goes across their shoulders, not their neck. The same goes for 4-point harnesses. If you don’t have a booster seat and are not using a youth-style harness, the connector strap could also be located directly across your kid's neck rather than their chest. You don’t want children sitting too low, but you also don’t want them elevated too high either -- lest they not receive the torso protection that seatbelts and harnesses are designed to provide. Rather, you want to use Polaris Ranger youth seats or booster seats that place your little ones in the location a normal adult would sit. 

Using Youth-Style Helmets In The Polaris Ranger

Many states in the US have ORV laws that make it mandatory for individuals under the age of 18 to wear helmets when riding in a side-by-side. And while this may be no issue for teenagers and older kids, for those that require car seats, UTV helmets can often cause more harm than they prevent. 

A bulky, full-face helmet, for example, might put your child’s head at a dangerous angle when used in conjunction with a Polaris Ranger car seat. Furthermore, the weight of even the lightest off-road helmets can be too much for a young rider's neck to bear. Add sudden stopping, turns, and, god forbid, a collision of any kind, and severe neck damage, whiplash, and other issues are more likely to result in young children wearing heavy helmets.  

Padded toddler helmets are a good solution, as they are mostly foam and weigh next to nothing. Lightweight bicycle helmets can work as well, and so too do half-shell skateboard helmets. Not only will such Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories help you circumnavigate the law and ensure that you pass the inspection of your local local Forrest Rangers, but they also protect the neck of young riders while offering a significant amount of skull protection to avoid concussions and minor bumps to the head.   

You might be of the opinion that people need to stop looking to the government to protect them, and that the government needs to change their mentality and not be involved with such issues. Just know, however, that the warden will follow the law regardless of how sound it is, writing you a ticket regardless of your rational pleas and superior arguments. To see which laws are in place where you ride, see our article about Polaris Ranger street legal requirements by state.  

In Closing

At the end of the day, keeping your kids safe while riding in a UTV is up to you. Polaris Ranger youth safety accessories like car seats and specialty-designed UTV booster seats are a given, and helmets are unquestionably beneficial for older riders. But be careful when putting heavy helmets on underdeveloped necks, as you might just cause the very thing you’re trying to avoid!