Snopasses to be Sold By All Autopac Agents This Winter: MPIC

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October 2, 2009 – Manitoba snowmobilers will be able to purchase their Snopasses at more than 300 MPI agents across the province beginning Nov. 1, Snoman President Ernie Smelski and CEO and President of Manitoba Public Insurance Marilyn McLaren announced.

“Snowmobilers can now register their machines and buy a Snopass at the same time when they visit an Autopac agent located anywhere throughout the province,” said Marilyn McLaren, CEO and President of Manitoba Public Insurance.

Prior to November 1, snowmobile owners would have had to make two separate business transactions: one with their Autopac broker, with a second visit to a Snopass vendor.

“This integration is a positive step for Manitoba’s snowmobiling community,” said McLaren. “It’s a one-stop shop for snowmobilers. Manitoba Public Insurance also has the support of our business partner, the Insurance Brokers Association of Manitoba.”

As of November 2010, there will be a complete electronic integration of the Snopass with MPI’s registration system. At that time snowmobilers will be offered the full complement of time payment options offered by Manitoba Public Insurance.

In order to travel on Snoman’s groomed snowmobile trails, snowmobilers require a valid Snopass. Snowmobilers who do not have a Snopass while riding on a Snoman trail will receive a $278 ticket. Enforcement will be carried out by Natural Resource Officers and the RCMP.

The pass, which costs $105 up to and including Dec. 15, includes a sticker which must be visible on the licence plate of the snowmobile. Those purchasing the pass after Dec. 15 will pay $135. A seven-day Snopass is also available at a cost of $60. Revenues raised from the sale of Snopasses go directly to Snoman and are used to groom trails and enhance recreational snowmobiling in Manitoba.

Snoman (Snowmobilers of Manitoba) Inc. is a non-profit organization representing 51 provincial snowmobiling clubs that maintain and groom more than 12,000 km of Manitoba’s scenic trails. Provincial clubs are financially supported through the sale of Snopasses.

“Our organization and thousands of volunteers will be able to spend more quality time on providing a service to Manitoba Snowmobilers. This paves the way for us to provide the best possible initiatives, which include further improvements for safety enhancements for the present and future of Snowmobilers of Manitoba,” said Snoman President Ernie Smelski.

Snoman Integration Chairperson, Bill Musey said, “I am pleased with the cooperation from government and MPI to begin the process of Integration. This will be a historic milestone for Snoman.”

This new partnership will also result in Manitoba Public Insurance and Snoman working together on a detailed study of snowmobiling within the province: where snowmobilers ride, how often they ride, how many machines are registered/not registered, what are the most pressing perceived issues facing snowmobilers in Manitoba, and snowmobilers’ awareness of safety. This study will be used by Manitoba Public Insurance and Snoman to develop future educational and safety campaigns.

“Manitoba’s snowmobile trails provide enjoyable recreational opportunities and are important drivers of economic development and tourism,” said Conservation Minister Stan Struthers. “I am pleased that Snoman and MPI have been able to work together to help ensure a safe and sustainable trail system for years to come.”

For more information snowmobilers can go to www.mpi.mb.ca, or www.snoman.mb.ca.

About Manitoba Public Insurance

Manitoba Public Insurance is a non-profit Crown Corporation that has provided basic automobile coverage since 1971. Our services are available throughout Manitoba in claim centres and Customer Service centres. www.mpi.mb.ca.