Investigating Accidents Involving All-Terrain Vehicles

When operated properly, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and other off-road equipment can be a fun way to explore the wilderness. However, this adventure potentially involves dangers such as overturning, collision, and occupant ejection. ATVs are not truly made for every terrain out there and many individuals climb on to an ATV without properly understanding how the machine operates and what to do in the case of an emergency.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC):

  • 135,000 people are injured every year due to ATV accidents.
  • Over 700 people are killed in these accidents every year.
  • Nearly 1/3 of the people killed in ATV accidents each year are minors (16 and under).
  • Many accidents can be prevented if proper safety advice is followed.

Causes of ATV-related accidents range from drunk driving, excessive speed, hill-climbing, and aggressive turns that induce a rollover. Exceeding the passenger and/or weight capacity on the ATV is another common cause of accidents since many of these vehicles are designed to hold one passenger, and one passenger only.

The CPSC recommends these rules of the trail to make safety a part of the plan for every ride:

  • Do not drive ATVs on paved roads.
  • Do not allow a minor under 16 to drive or ride an adult ATV.
  • Do not drive ATVs with a passenger or ride as a passenger.
  • Always wear a helmet and other protective gear such as eye protection, boots, gloves, long pants, and a long-sleeved shirt.
  • Take a hands-on safety training course.

While ATV accidents are often attributed to driver negligence, there may be other factors involved. Make sure you have an experienced engineer on your case to review and understand all aspects of the crash investigation. Contact us to review your next ATV accident or submit a case request online.