All-terrain vehicles (ATV) provide a popular source of recreation for many Californians. Unfortunately, as enjoyment of these vehicles has grown, so have the number of accidents and injuries. While the increase in popularity of ATVs accounts for part of the rise in accidents, another alarming cause of injury and death is that ATVs are being made more powerful, heavier and faster. Some ATVs can reach 100 mph.
Thousands of adults are injured on ATVs every year. Even more disturbing is the fact that more than 25 percent of ATV-related deaths between 1982 and 2009 involved individuals less than 16 years old. While only 15 percent of ATV users are children, they account for a disproportionate 27 percent of the injuries and 28 percent of the deaths occurring on ATVs.
Preventing injuries from ATV accidents
ATV injuries are less likely to occur to younger individuals if:
- No one under the age of 16 drives an ATV, as per manufacturers’ guidelines.
- Helmets are worn at all times.
- Teens (and preteens) only ride lighter ATVs in the event of an accident.
- Young riders refrain from adding passengers to ATVs designed for individual use.
In the event of an ATV accident, injured parties may be able to sue for damages. Bringing a suit is complex, so an attorney with knowledge of similar cases has the best chance of achieving positive results for the victim. Identification of the appropriate party or parties to sue as well as a detailed investigation into the cause of the accident will be necessary. Where defective parts are a cause of the accident, manufacturers can also be sued for being wholly or partially responsible.