The U.S Consumer Product Commission (CPSC) is advising ATV riders to remain safe on the trails in an effort to curb the rising trend in deaths and injuries seen each summer.
In 2004 to 2006 deaths of children aged 16 and younger raised an average of 65 percent from March to April. Adult deaths rose 85 percent over the same time period. ATV-related deaths are expected to continue rising if riders are not taking necessary safety precautions.
There was an average of nearly 700 ATV-related fatalities and about 136,000 emergency-department treated injuries each year from 2004 to 2010.
At the end of June 2012, preliminary reports have been received by the CPSC indicating 28 children under the age of 16 and 130 adults died in an ATV accident since January.
The following guidelines are provided by CPSC: They offer the following tips to help keep ATV riders safe:
- All ATV drivers, adults and children, should take a hands-on ATV safety course from a certified instructor.
- Always wear protective gear, especially a helmet, when riding an ATV.
- Do not ride on a single-rider ATV as a passenger or carry a passenger if you drive one.
- Never allow more people on any ATV than the vehicle was designed to carry.
- Do not drive ATVs on paved roads. ATVs have solid rear axles, which make turning on paved surfaces difficult and dangerous and increase the risk of the ATV overturning or hitting another object, such as a tree or car.
- Do not permit children younger than 16 years old to drive or ride adult ATVs. Children younger than 16 years old lack the developmental skills to safely drive adults ATVs, and more than 90 percent of all injuries to children involve this scenario. Likewise, children younger than 6 should never be on an ATV, either as a driver or as a passenger.
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