Health experts have indicated that parental supervision and manufacturer warnings are doing little to prevent children from operating all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), resulting in a disproportionate number of serious ATV accident injuries among underage drivers. According to a statement issued last week by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), labels placed on ATVs warning that they …
Health experts have indicated that parental supervision and manufacturer warnings are doing little to prevent children from operating all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), resulting in a disproportionate number of serious ATV accident injuries among underage drivers. According to a statement issued last week by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), labels placed on ATVs warning that they should only be used by those older than 16 years of age are ineffective. The academy also found that dealer-sponsored training is infrequent and is typically ignored by young drivers, which only contributes to the risk of serious injuries from ATV accidents among children. If you have suffered major injuries in an ATV accident in Oklahoma, contact our experienced ATV accident attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center to discuss your legal options.
Nearly Half of All ATV Crashes Involve Children
The AAP’s findings, presented on October 22 at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition, indicate that drivers ages 16 and under account for an alarming 40% of all ATV accident injuries in the United States. Unfortunately, less than 35% of the young people involved in such accidents were wearing helmets at the time the accident occurred. The study involved a survey of children hospitalized at a Level I trauma center after suffering injuries in an ATV accident between 2004 and 2009. Researchers interviewed 44 families regarding the ATV accident, their children, and the cause of the crash, as well as the features provided by the all-terrain vehicle, and their children’s driving behavior.
Serious Injuries Resulting from ATV Accidents
The researchers found that nearly 35% of all ATV injuries among children under 16 involved the head and neck, the largest category of injury. The second most common ATV accident injuries were bone fractures (30.6%), followed by soft tissue injuries (14.3%), and chest (10%) and abdomen (10%) injuries. According to the study, the most common type of ATV accidents were collisions, accounting for 36% of crashes involving children. Rollover accidents made up 32% of ATV crashes, following by falling from the vehicle (23%). In a significant 82% of ATV accidents, children under the age of 16 were driving.
Contact Our ATV Accident Lawyers for Help
In light of these findings, the study authors have concluded that ATVs pose a serious danger for children under the age of 16. They note that underage drivers do not possess the physical strength, maturity, cognitive skills or judgment to safely handle all-terrain vehicles. As a result, the researchers recommend licensing requirements, legislation requiring helmet use, and mandatory safety courses as a means to reduce the risk of devastating ATV accidents involving children. If your child has suffered a serious injury in an Oklahoma ATV accident, consult our knowledgeable ATV accident attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center for legal help. Our law firm is located in Oklahoma City, and our ATV accident lawyers have extensive experience protecting the legal rights of ATV accident victims and their families.