Compensation is Possible After an ATV Accident
The Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., represents people and their families who have suffered injuries or death in all types of all-terrain vehicle ("ATV") accidents. There are many types of ATVs, some of which are used recreationally and some which are typically used for work or farming purposes.
Unfortunately, some manufacturers of ATVs have designed them dangerously, which may cause them to roll over easily or fail to provide adequate protection in the form of roll cages or seat belts for their occupants. When these safety precautions are not taken by manufacturers, or when ATV drivers operate them in a negligent fashion, accidents can occur that result in serious injuries and even deaths. When the worst happens, a Fort Myers ATV accident attorney from the Spivey Law Firm is here to help.
ATV Accident Statistics
According to a report from the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC):
Off-Highway Vehicle-Related Fatalities Reported
- As of September 2020, the year 2017 is the most recent year of reporting fatalities that the CPSC considers complete. The Commission notes 2,258 deaths associated with Off-Highway Vehicles (OHVs) resulting from 2,210 incidents during the 3 years from 2015 through 2017.
- Of the OHVs involved in those 2,258 reported deaths, the CPSC classifies 1,697 as All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs), 445 as Recreational Off-highway Vehicles (ROVs), and 47 as Utility Terrain Vehicles (UTVs). For the remaining 69 deaths, the Commission does not know the vehicle classification, but it concludes that the vehicle is either an ROV or UTV.
- The CPSC divided these 2,258 reported deaths across various age groups: under 16 years (16%), 16-24 (15%), 25-34 (15%), 35-44 (11%) 45-54 (16%) and 55+ (27%). Children under 12 (8%) represent about half (48%) of the fatalities among the under-16 age group.
- The Commission observed that OHV overturns and/or collisions (e.g., with other vehicles or stationary objects, such as trees) were the most common fatality hazards.
OHV-Related Emergency Department-Treated Injury Estimates
- Over the entire 5-year period from 2015 through 2019, CPSC staff estimates that 524,600 emergency department-treated injuries in the United States were associated with OHVs (ATVs, ROVs, and/or UTVs). This corresponds to an annual average of 104,900 emergency department-treated injuries over the period.
- Although these estimates generally decreased from 110,000 in 2015 to 96,000 in 2019, CPSC staff did not find most year-over-year changes to be statistically significant.
- The Commission divided injuries during the 2015 through 2019 period across various age groups: under 16 years (27%), 16-24 (24%), 25-34 (20%), 35-44 (13%) 45-54 (9%) and 55+ (8%). This distribution of estimated injuries appears to be more heavily weighted towards younger ages than the distribution of reported fatalities.
- Of the 2015-2019 estimated OHV-related emergency department-treated injuries for all ages, CPSC staff found that:
- Most were treated and released (84%) or hospitalized (15%).
- The most common diagnoses were fractures (28%) and contusions/abrasions (21%).
- The affected body parts were primarily the arm (shoulders to fingertips, 29%), the head or neck (29%), the leg (21%), and the torso (20%).
- Sex was more frequently identified as male (69%) than female (31%).
Common ATV Injuries
Victims of ATV accidents who fall off or are thrown from an ATV can suffer a wide variety of serious injuries, including:
- Head injuries
- Facial injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck injuries
- Fractures and broken bones
- Spinal cord injuries
Does Insurance Cover ATV Accidents?
Although generally, ATVs must be insured separately from your auto insurance policy, in some cases, ATV accidents may be covered by homeowner’s insurance. Covering ATV accidents with homeowner’s insurance varies according to your location, how the accident occurred, and whether it happened on your land.
For example, your insurance may cover an accident that occurred on your property but not an accident that happened on your neighbor’s property. When riding on public or government land like state parks, many states require you to keep your ATV registration and proof of insurance with you.
ATV Regulations in Florida
A drivers’ license is not required to operate an ATV. As a result, children often operate ATVs recreationally or on farms. When inexperienced young people ride ATVs with little or no driving instruction beforehand, they are particularly prone to accidents. ATVs are typically very heavy machines that can crush or even kill a child; therefore, when children ride ATVs and get into accidents, the risk of injury is very high.
All too often, ATV owners unwittingly allow children to ride ATVs on the assumption that they are safe to ride and operate on their own. As a result, ATV owners often do not give children the instruction and experience necessary to properly operate these potentially dangerous vehicles.
Our Fort Myers accident law firm can investigate dangers inherent in the ATV itself, as well as the multiple forms of insurance that may cover the injuries resulting from the accident. ATVs have been the subject of significant ongoing investigations by the CPSC. Moreover, ATVs have been the subject of numerous recalls because of safety problems and devastating injuries caused by their accidents.
Therefore, ATVs have a history of defects and safety issues that have led to many injuries and deaths nationwide, as well as in the state of Florida. When these accidents occur, injury victims and their families are entitled to seek compensation for their losses, including compensation for their medical expenses, lost wages, and other types of damages. In the case of a death resulting from an ATV accident, recoverable expenses may include funeral and burial expenses, as well.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Fort Myers ATV Accident Attorney
Injured in an ATV accident? You may be entitled to compensation, and our Fort Myers accident law firm can help. Contact The Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., at (239) 337-7483 or statewide (888) 477-4839 for a free consultation if you or a loved one has been involved in an ATV accident that resulted in injury or death.
If you retain us to assist you, we will charge you no fees or costs unless you win a settlement or a jury verdict from the responsible party or parties. Please visit our settlements and verdicts page to view the results in some of the cases handled by Randall L. Spivey.