Study Shows ATV Accidents Are on the Rise
Memorial Day is not only the start of summer. Around the United States, as the skies brighten and the sun comes out, ATV riding season begins. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is launching a public service campaign urging riders to keep all ATVs or all-terrain vehicles off paved roadways. Each year, there are about 650 deaths and 100,000 injuries reported as a result of ATV accidents, according to the CPSC’s annual report.
Why It’s Dangerous
Officials say it is highly advisable to stay off public roadways even if your county or city allows you to drive ATVs on paved public roads. This is because off-road vehicles are not designed to be driven on paved surfaces and could be difficult to control on paved surfaces. There is a greater risk of a rollover crash as well. Also, collisions with other vehicles are often deadly for ATV operators.
According to the CPSC, nearly 32 percent of reported deaths were related to incidents involving ATV being driven on paved roadways and parking lots. Between 2010 and 2013, 430,000 people were treated in emergency rooms for ATV-related injuries and a vast majority of these victims are children and teens.
ATV Safety Tips
We know that ATV accidents have the potential to result in catastrophic injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord trauma and internal organ damage. These are injuries that could result in permanent injuries and disabilities, if not death. However, these injuries are often preventable by taking the necessary precautions. Here are a few tips:
- Always wear a helmet and other protective gear including boots, gloves, long sleeved shirt, long pants and eye protection.
- Do not ride an ATV crowded. Most ATVs are only designed for one rider.
- Riders to receive training from a qualified instructor before they begin to ride.
- Riders under 16 should only drive age-appropriate youth model ATVs. It’s important to remember that an ATV is not a toy. If you wouldn’t let your child drive a car, he or she shouldn’t be driving an ATV either. Adults should always supervise younger riders.
- Ride only on designated trails at a safe speed.
- It goes without saying. But never drive an ATV while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries or if you have lost a loved one as the result of a defective ATV, please contact an experienced product defect attorney who can provide you with information about pursuing your legal rights.