How to Be Safe on Your ATV
According to a news report issued by WCBJ, two young girls were seriously injured when their ATV hit a vehicle late one August night near Dunnellon. According to state troopers, the girls attempted to cross the road on the ATV in front of a Buick. The 37-year-old driver of the vehicle was heading north on Southwest 198th Terrace. The Buick struck the ATV, making it overturn.
Both girls, who were 7 years old, were taken to UF Shands. One is listed in serious condition while the other is listed in critical condition, according to the hospital.
ATVs are Not a Toy
Whether the vehicles are used for sport or for fun, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are popular across the United States, especially during the months when the weather is warm in Ocala. Unfortunately, it is quite easy to forget that actually riding an ATV can be dangerous – as can be seen in the Dunnellon accident. Simply put, an ATV is a vehicle and should not be treated like a simple toy. It is true that everyone can join in on the fun of riding an ATV, such as friends and family, however, it should always be kept in mind that serious injuries can happen if safety precautions are not followed.
In fact, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that almost 500 ATV accident-related deaths happen in the United States each year. In order to ensure your own safety and the safety of your loved ones when riding ATVs in Ocala, we have listed several safety tips below.
Safe ATV Practices
The following safety precautions should be followed every time someone rides an ATV in Ocala.
- Do not ride alone – While this does not mean you should have a passenger on your ATV, it is best to have at least one other person riding alongside you. This is because you can get stuck in a ditch, run out of gas, or crash into something. In the event you end up in a difficult situation, it is best to have a buddy available to help you out.
- Ride the right ATV – Like most vehicles, ATVs come in a wide range of types and sizes. Therefore, when you are choosing an ATV think about its purpose. In other words, are you going to go trail riding? Will you be racing? Will you be towing? Beyond this, be sure to factor in your or the driver’s level of strength and skill. Not surprisingly, larger ATVs mandate more control and strength to manage, while smaller ones have less power. If children are riding an ATV, like in the Dunnellon case, any children under the age of 16 should not be operating an ATV that has an engine larger than 90cc.
- Stay off public roads – By their very name, an ATV is an all-terrain vehicle. However, venturing out onto public or paved roads can be just as dangerous as riding through unknown areas. This is because public roads are full of vehicles and drivers who, like in the Dunnellon case, can run into you and your ATV.
- Don’t Go Beyond Your Capabilities – While it may seem like fun, do not attempt to perform stunts or tricks that require more skill or experience than you currently have. Additionally, be sure not to ride through areas that are difficult for you to navigate. Despite ATVs being specifically designed to ride off-road, it is best to stick to trails that are already established. If you stray too far, you may not know what you will encounter.
”Simply put, an ATV is a vehicle and should not be treated like a simple toy.
NOTICE: The article above is not intended to serve as legal advice, and you should not rely on it as such. It is offered only as general information. You should consult with a duly licensed attorney regarding your Florida legal matter, as every situation is unique. Please know that merely reading this article, subscribing to this blog, or otherwise contacting Bogin, Munns & Munns does not establish an attorney-client relationship with our firm. Should you seek legal representation from Bogin, Munns & Munns, any such representation must first be agreed to by the firm and confirmed in a written agreement.