All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are light utility vehicles used for various industrial and recreational purposes.
When driven correctly, these off-highway vehicles are relatively safe for work or recreational activities.
However, recent studies show that ATV-related accidents are increasing, with many incidents involving children.
According to recent ATV accident statistics, an estimated 135,000 people suffer injuries, and over 700 people die due to ATV accidents yearly.
Moreover, nearly 26% of injury victims are 16 or younger, with children under 12 representing half of the under-16 deaths from 2007 to 2017.
Negligence is a leading cause of ATV accidents. You could be entitled to financial compensation if you or a loved one got into an ATV accident due to someone else’s actions.
Our personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, can help you seek the justice you deserve against negligent parties.
Contact an ATV accident lawyer at (888) 424-5757 to schedule a free consultation.
Why Are ATVs Dangerous?
An all-terrain vehicle (ATV) has a high center of gravity. Riders can tackle rough paths with a relatively low risk of tipping over if they go at appropriate speeds.
On the other hand, an ATV’s high center of gravity increases the risk of tipping when driving too fast.
Furthermore, ATVs weigh more than 600 pounds. If an ATV tips, the rider could get crushed under its weight and suffer severe injuries.
These recreational off-highway vehicles can also cause devastating collisions due to their mass.
These factors make off-road recreational and utility task vehicles inherently dangerous.
Hence, ATV riders must have the skills to drive on and off-road safely, including a quick reaction time and the ability to maneuver through rough terrain.
Common Causes of ATV Accidents
Most ATV-related accidents are caused by negligence by the rider, owner, or someone nearby. The following are the most common causes of ATV-related accidents:
- Insufficient Skill: Operating an all-terrain vehicle requires quick thinking, experience, and knowledge of safety rules. Children often do not have these skills, making them frequent victims of ATV injuries. Similarly, adults risk injury more if they drive too fast or take on challenging terrain without sufficient experience or supervision.
- Reckless Driving: Speeding, drunk driving, performing risky stunts, and other reckless behavior increase the chances of an ATV accident and lead to a higher fatality rate.
- Driving on Paved Roads: Operators should only go on the pavement when crossing the street and do so slowly.
- Riding with a Passenger: Most ATVs are designed for one operator only. Having another person in the back could reduce stability and throw the passenger off the vehicle.
- Failing to Observe Safety Laws: Every state has rules regarding ATV safety, usually tackling speed limits and permitted areas for ATVs. Disobeying these laws can lead to legal trouble and increase the chances of getting into an accident.
- Driving on Unfamiliar Routes: A common cause of ATV-related accidents is unfamiliar or dangerous terrains. Without enough experience and expertise, riders could crash into obstacles, get stuck, or tip over on steep slopes.
Common ATV Injuries
The following are the most common ATV-related injuries according to data from emergency departments across the country:
- Cuts and bruises
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck injuries
- Sprains and strains
- Crushing injuries
Consumer Product Safety Commission ATV Accident Statistics
ATV accidents are more common than you think. The following are recent ATV accident statistics according to the CPSC’s 2017 annual report:
- In 2017, there were approximately 93,800 ATV-related emergency department visits in the US; around 26% of these incidents involved children younger than 16 years old
- There were 15,250 fatalities reported to the CPSC from 1982 to 2017; 3,315 of these victims were children under the age of 16
- In 2014, 588 ATV-related fatalities were reported to the CPSC; 12% of victims were in the under-16 age group.
- Victims under 12 represent nearly 50% of all under-16 child fatalities related to ATVs
- Approximately 135,000 people are injured, and 700 die in ATV accidents yearly.
ATV Safety Measures to Know Before Your First Ride
Utility terrain vehicles are relatively safe with appropriate use and an experienced operator. Follow these tips to reduce your risk of an accident when riding an off-highway vehicle first:
- Do Your Research: Learn the inherent dangers of driving ATVs and how to avoid these risks while riding.
- Always Ride With a Helmet. Helmets help prevent head injuries that could prove fatal, especially in severe collisions.
- Never Drink Alcohol: Every operator must be able to ride their vehicle with total concentration and coordination. Alcohol inhibits these abilities and increases your risk of getting injured.
- Know Your Limits: Despite their name, ATVs are not meant for all terrains. Do not ride on unsafe, too steep, rough, muddy, or deep routes.
- Wear Complete Gear: Long pants, long-sleeved shirts, eye protection, boots, gloves, and other protective gear can help avoid injuries if you get into an ATV accident.
Talk to Our ATV Accident Lawyers Today
There are thousands of injuries and deaths related to ATV accidents yearly.
Sadly, most of these incidents involve victims younger than 16, almost always stemming from someone else’s negligence.
Did you or a loved one get into an ATV accident caused by someone else? If so, our personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, could help.
Our legal team has decades of experience assisting victims to recover financial compensation for their damages and holding negligent parties responsible.
Contact our personal injury law firm at (888) 424-5757 for a free consultation.
All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team will remain private under an attorney-client relationship.
Our lawyers handle all accepted cases on a contingency fee basis. You don’t have to pay our legal fees unless we win your case.