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All Terrain Vehicles are not for kids, period

A two year old boy died this week as a result of crash while riding on an ATV. That model of ATV, reportedly, was meant for kids between the ages of 6 and 12.

According to an ABC7 news report, the vehicle flipped and landed on top of the toddler as he was playing with it in his front yard. The boy’s mother apparently had to use a remote control switch to stop the vehicle.

According to Safe Kids Worldwide, a national child safety organization, ATVs are involved in about 38,000 injuries and 100 deaths of children 16 and under each year. Wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of head injuries, but no safety devices can adequately protect against other serious head, spinal cord and abdominal injuries commonly sustained while riding these vehicles.

Per an article posted on the organization’s website,

“Compared to a bike crash, an ATV crash is six times likely to send a child to the hospital and 12 times as likely to kill a child” and “a child riding an ATV is four times as likely to be seriously injured as a rider over age 16.”

ATVs are powerful open-seat vehicles that speed up to 70 miles per hour over dirt trails and wild terrain. Government regulations and voluntary steps by the industry have proved virtually non-effective, according to experts.

“Previous efforts to make ATVs safer for kids have proved inadequate,” said Alan Korn, Safe Kids director of public policy. “Government efforts and the voluntary standards observed by the industry have not kept children out of the emergency room. On the contrary, the number of kids getting seriously injured on ATVs every year is increasing.”

Obviously, what’s been done in terms of regulation is not enough. The industry has done nothing to promote awareness of the dangers involved and government regulations have not conveyed the message to parents that their child should not be riding on an ATV, ever! We have and will again pursue adults who allow children to operate or play with dangerous instrumentalities. ATV’s are dangerous and should not be operated by children without training, safety equipment, supervision and the appropraite skill and maturity to operate them safely.

We at Bisna|Chase have extensive experience representing the serioiusly injured and the family of deceased accident victims. If you or a loved one has been injured in an all terrain vehicle accident or other serious traffic accidents, call me for a consultation. I’ll answer your questions, explain your rights and point out your viable options.

An organization called Injury Free Coalition for Kids offers some ATV tips on its Web site, If you or your children are simply compelled to ride an ATV, please be careful!

• Never use a 3-wheeler. They are not safe and no longer manufactured.
• Attend an ATV driver’s safety course.
• Ride an age-appropriate ATV. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that no one under 16 years of age ride a full-size ATV.
• Never carry passengers. ATVs are designed for one person.
• Do not use ATVs on the streets or at night.
• Always wear an approved helmet with eye protection.
• Wear non-skid, closed-toe shoes.
• Wear long pants and a long-sleeve shirt.
• Never operate an ATV under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

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