Too many All-Terrain Vehicle (“ATV”) riders–young and old–are dying or are experiencing life altering injuries from incidents involving ATVs.
An estimated 740 people died in 2003 in incidents associated with ATVs. In 2004, there were an estimated 136,100 emergency room treated injuries associated with ATVs. About a third of all deaths and injuries involved victims under 16 years old. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) has reported that ridership has continued to grow, with 6.2 million four-wheeled ATVs in use in 2003.
The major ATV manufacturers agreed in Consent Decrees in 1988, and in subsequent voluntary action plans, that they would not manufacture threewheel ATVs, that they would place engine size restrictions on ATVs sold for use by children under 16, and that they would offer driver-training programs.
CPSC recommends that all ATV riders adhere to the following safety tips every time they ride an ATV.
- Always wear a helmet and safety gear such as boots and gloves while on an ATV.
- All ATV-riders should take a hands-on safety training course.
- Children and young people under the age of 16 should not ride adult ATVs.
- Never drive an ATV on paved roads, and never drive an ATV while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Never drive a single-rider ATV with a passenger, and never ride these vehicles as a passenger.There are some ATVs that are designed for two riders. Passengers on tandem ATVs should be at least 12 years old.
* Reference: Consumer Product Safety Commission. Original content can be found at: http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Safety-Education/Safety-Guides/Sports-Fitness-and-Recreation/All-Terrain-Vehicle-Safety/