As all-terrain vehicle (ATV) use continues to gain in popularity in the United States, so do the amount of injuries and deaths due to ATV-related incidents. ATV’s are heavy, and fast, pieces of machinery, up to 600 lbs and 75 MPH respectively. Although the vehicle is required to be registered, in the State of Rhode Island the only age requirements are that you must be at least 12 years old to operate an ATV and those ages 12-16 must be accompanied by an adult. Although these vehicles may be similar to driving an automobile or motorcycle for an adult for whom driving is second nature, it is not so for children. Personal injury attorney David Tapalian is familiar with the trauma that can be caused by a crash. His Providence based personal injury law firm handles personal injury cases all over Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Adults are severely injured in ATV crashes of course, but when a young rider is involved, the injuries are often even worse than an auto accident. Since 1982, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that more than 5,000 deaths have been related to ATV injuries in the United States, with an estimated 25 percent of severe injuries and deaths occurring to those under age 16.
Most ATV Injuries Are Preventable
The most common causes of injuries for children riding ATV’s are vehicle rollover, ejection from the vehicle, and colliding with a stationary object, such as a tree. With proper training and precautions, like wearing a safety helmet, most of these pediatric injuries and deaths are preventable. It is crucial that both adults and children are trained properly to ride these vehicles. Sadly, they are often not. Because young riders are inexperienced, they are less likely to understand the seriousness of operating such a heavy vehicle and therefore have more risky driving behavior. The high rate of injury and death for youngsters operating ATV’s is also due to a lack of safety equipment.
ATV’s Not Recommended For Those Under Age 16
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents do not allow children under age 16 to drive, or ride, ATV’s. They state that “children are not developmentally capable of operating these heavy machines”. The Consumer Federation of America reported that 58 children were killed in 2015 alone in ATV accidents. Both the AAP and Consumer Federation of America continue to fight against manufacturers trying to produce a “youth” ATV marketed to those ages 14-16.
Have You Been Injured in an ATV Accident?
If you, or your child, have been hurt in an ATV accident in RI or MA, whether it be a roll over, collision, ejection, or other bodily damage, seek immediate medical attention for your injuries. If your ATV injuries are due to the fault of another, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and medical bills, as well as pain and suffering. Do not hesitate to seek the advice of a skilled personal injury attorney at Tapalian Law who will speak with you about the details of your case and determine if you have a claim against another for wrongful death or negligence in your ATV accident. Attorney David Tapalian is a Providence personal injury lawyer experienced in helping those who have been hurt or injured in all types of accidents, including ATV accidents, car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle accidents. He will fight to get you the compensation you deserve while you focus on the road to recovery. Contact Tapalian Law for a free case review at