The use of ATVs has increased in Georgia and the use of all terrain vehicles (ATVs) greatly increased this past year as children were out of school due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the United States, about 40,000 children under the age of 16 are treated in emergency rooms for ATV related injuries each year, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children younger than age 16 should not operate ATVs. ATVs with saddle seats and handlebars are relatively unsteady and have a high center of gravity with a narrow track. This combination makes the ATVs risky for rollover accidents which are extremely dangerous and sometimes fatal.
Dr. Charles Jennisen, a pediatric emergency room doctor and clinical professor for the departments of pediatric and emergency medicine at the University of Iowa reported that, “more kids in the US under the age of 16 die from ATVs than bicycle crashes.”
According to the National Trauma Data Bank, ATVs are more dangerous than dirt bikes and as dangerous as motorcycles. If you decide to operate an ATV, the Consumer Safety Commission urges you to follow these rules to avoid accidents and injuries:
Serious injuries that may result from this type of accident include traumatic brain injuries (TBI), spinal cord injuries (SCI), neck injuries, fractures, dislocations, chest injuries, and abdominal injuries.
With hunting season in full swing in Georgia and South Carolina, ATVs will be used even more during the next few months. Similar to hunting, there are certain requirements for operating an ATV depending on which state you are in.
In South Carolina, it is mandatory to title your ATV, but there is no need to register or provide any proof of liability insurance. South Carolina requires anyone under the age of 16 to wear a safety helmet and eye protection at all times. They are not allowed to carry a passenger regardless of how many people the ATV is designed to hold.
In Georgia, if you are planning to use your ATV strictly as an off-road vehicle, then you will not have to register or provide insurance for your vehicle. If the ATV is driven on major roadways, it is considered a motor vehicle and subject to the same rules and guidelines as any other vehicle on those roads.
Please check in more detail about the regulations of ATVs in your state before operating one. Georgia and South Carolina may have different requirements from each other and other states.
In a lot of instances, passengers are not allowed to ride with someone who is operating an ATV, especially if that someone is a minor. That does not mean it does not happen.
The lack of experience in minor ATV operators makes riding with a passenger that much more dangerous. The injuries a passenger gets are often severe. Sometimes an accident involving an ATV that is holding a passenger can be worse because of the added weight in the vehicle.
Getting justice as a passenger in an ATV accident certainly is an option. You likely are suffering terrible injuries.
Get your injuries treated, call our office and set up a free consultation. We can go over the details of your case and help you determine what legal action you are entitled to as a passenger in an ATV accident.
If you or a loved one was injured in an ATV accident that occurred in South Carolina or Georgia, please call the Augusta ATV accident lawyers at Nimmons Malchow Johnson. We have offices in Augusta, GA and North Augusta, SC.