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Children Are Still Getting Injured Riding ATVs Despite Warnings

A new study has found that young children are still getting injured and killed in ATV crashes, despite warnings from pediatricians warning parents to not let children under 16 ride all-terrain vehicles.

Details of the ATV Accident Study

Beginning in 2000, the American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended that children under the age of 16 be restricted from ATV use. Additionally, riders have been urged to wear helmets, refrain from taking passengers, and to avoid roads.

In the face of these warnings, the mortality rate from ATV crashes involving children under 18 has remained consistent over the past few years.

In their study, researchers examined data on 1,912 patients under age of 18 who were injured while riding an ATV. All patients were treated in trauma centers in Pennsylvania from 2008 to 2014.

The analysis included, 28 children who were killed in ATV accidents. This averages to about one death for every 100,000 kids in the population.

While the study did find a slight decrease in the injury rate, from 6.7 kids per 100,000 children over the first five years to 5.8 kids per 100,000 over the second five years, the decline was not large enough to rule out the possibility the drop was simply the product of chance.

ATV Safety Tips

The following information was provided by the ATV Safety Institute:

  • Always wear a Department of Transportation-compliant helmet, goggles, long sleeves, pants, over-the-ankle boots, and gloves when riding an ATV.
  • Avoid riding on paved roads except to cross when done in a manner that is safe and permitted by law.
  • Never operate or ride an ATV while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Do not carry a passenger on a single-rider ATV or more than one passenger on a two-person ATV.
  • Only ride on designated trails and at safe speeds.


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