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Alabama ATV Injuries a Summer Risk

Apr 25, 2013 - ATV/SUV Rollover Accidents by

In April, Alabama.com reported on the tragic death of a Coaling woman.

The 37-year-old victim was involved in an accident while riding a four-wheeler. The four-wheeler was found lying on its side with the victim lying nearby next to a tree. The location of the crash was a private driveway near to the woman’s home. Her husband indicated that the victim had ridden the four-wheeler down the driveway to go to the mailbox and never returned.

Our Alabama ATV accident lawyers know that recreational vehicles are enjoyed by many, especially over the spring and summer months when the weather is nice. Unfortunately, four-wheelers, ATVs and other vehicles of this type can also be deadly when an accident happens. It is important for everyone to understand the risks inherent in riding a four-wheeler and to take steps necessary to protect themselves from these risks.

How Dangerous are Recreational Vehicles?
The data on ATVs and four-wheelers shows just how much danger these types of recreational vehicles present to riders. According to ATV Safety, for example, there were 327 deaths on ATVs in 2011 including 57 children under age 16 who lost their lives. Many others were injured, with 107,500 people in total going to ERs due to ATV injuries, 29,000 of whom were aged 16 or under.

ATVs and four wheelers are dangerous for a lot of reasons, including the fact that they are often operated by young people with limited experience. The tendency of drivers to use these vehicles in dangerous off-road situations and to drive fast to get a thrill are also contributing factors in why so many four wheeler and ATV accidents happen.

How Can You Stay Safe?
A high accident rate means that people need to be cautious when riding an ATV. Riders can continue to enjoy ATVs and can significantly reduce their chances of an accident by following some basic safety tips.

Some of the best tips that can help you to avoid ATV accidents include:

  • Taking a safety training course prior to riding. Parents should always require their kids to take such a course.
  • Wearing a helmet and other appropriate gear including long sleeves.
  • Riding only in designated areas or on off-road trails. ATVs do not operate well on pavement because the inner wheels can skid and cause the ATV to go out of control.
  • Riding only when sober. No one should ever get on an ATV or four-wheeler after consuming any alcohol or drugs.
  • Following all manufacturer safety instructions. This includes making sure that you do not put more passengers on an ATV than recommended. Many ATVs are designed only for one rider and this means that there should only be one person on them.

Following these safety tips is important and the tips should be followed all the time. As the recent ATV accident involving the Coaling woman showed, accidents often can and do happen close to home.

In some cases, these accidents may be the result of a dangerous or defective product marketed by the manufacturer. In other cases, a dealership may share the blame. In still others, a property owner may face liability when someone is injured in a riding accident.

Additional Resources:

Double-Texting Driver in Alabama Highlights Crazy Risks, Alabama Injury Attorneys Blog, April 9, 2013.

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