All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) continue to be a popular motorized vehicle allowing riders to experience adventure and enjoy time outdoors. However, every year, approximately 135,000 people are injured in ATV-related accidents, and there are between 300 – 400 fatalities—one-third of them are children under the age of 16. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported that between 1982 and 2018, there were over 15,500 ATV-related fatalities.
ATVs and Serious Injuries
While ATVs can be great fun and an enjoyable way for individuals and families to spend time, riding them can be dangerous. If drivers don’t take safety measures seriously, they put themselves, passengers, and other road users at risk. Because ATVs don’t have seat belts, roll bars, or safety cages, an accident while driving or riding one can cause serious injuries, including:
- Head injuries. Without a roof, an ATV leaves you exposed should you crash or be in a rollover. Whether you’re moving at low or high speeds, if you don’t wear a helmet, the consequences can be catastrophic. You could experience a traumatic brain injury (TBI) with a concussion that could be mild to severe.
- Spinal cord injuries. Nearly 8% of ATV-related injuries result in some type of spinal cord injury. If you flip an ATV and it lands on top of you, you’re likely to suffer an injury to your back or neck because a typical ATV weighs between 500 – 600 pounds and can reach speeds of 55 mph. Most spinal cord injuries are due to negligent driving, an unstable design, or the vehicle’s center of gravity. Spinal cord injuries can be devastating, and the victim can suffer a permanent disability.
- Internal injuries. Due to the crushing weight of the ATV during an accident or rollover, internal organs are vulnerable should the rider or passenger get caught beneath it. You could suffer internal bruising, broken ribs, and internal bleeding—all needing swift medical attention.
How a Florida ATV Accident Lawyer Can Protect Your Rights
There are many different people and agencies that can be held responsible for injuries suffered in an ATV accident. Liability may fall on the ATV rental agency, the owners of the ATV, owners of the property where the accident happened, a negligent driver of the at-fault vehicle, or the manufacturer of the ATV if there was a mechanical defect.
If you were injured in an ATV accident, Attorney Coy H. Browning can help. He was a Florida State Trooper before he became an attorney and knows how to investigate an ATV accident, gather evidence, and present convincing arguments needed to get the compensation you deserve.