All-Terrain Vehicle Injury

All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are three and four-wheel recreational vehicles designed for off-road use. ATVs are increasing in popularity. Unfortunately, many ATV users suffer injuries in collisions. If you have suffered an injury related to an ATV, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries under North Carolina personal injury law. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we assertively represent clients who have suffered ATV related injuries.

Types of ATV Accidents

The nature of ATVs makes them unsafe in many instances. Many times, children or teenagers without driving experience operate ATVs, increasing the chance of a collision or accident. ATV accidents can happen in a variety of circumstances, such as:

  • A distracted ATV driver collides with a pedestrian or another vehicle
  • The driver of the ATV becomes injured due to negligently operating the ATV
  • The ATV driver carelessly drives the ATV at excessive speed, causing him or her to lose control and collide with another person or property
  • An ATV driver turns a corner using excessive speed or without properly shifting his or her weight, causing the ATV to flip and collide with another ATV or a pedestrian
  • More than one ATV rider sits on the ATV resulting in an excessive weight that could cause a collision
  • An ATV driver operates the vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or any other intoxicating substance
  • The ATV operator positions the vehicle unsafely, causing a collision
  • The ATV operator fails to give himself or herself enough time to stop the ATV to prevent a collision
Common Types of ATV Accident Injuries

ATV drivers remain unprotected except for wearing a helmet. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently compiled statistics analyzing ATV accidents. In 2013, 520 adults and 70 kids under 16 died in ATV-related accidents. ATV accidents caused over 100,000 injuries in 2016. Injuries included the following:

  • Arms and hands injuries accounted for 29% of the injuries
  • Head or neck injuries accounted for 27% of the injuries
  • Leg and foot injuries accounted for 22% of the injuries
  • Torso injuries accounted for 20% of the injuries

In ATV fatalities from 2010 - 2013, the location of deaths varied. 32% of all fatal accidents took place on paved surfaces. 18% of crashes occurred on unpaved roads. Fatal accidents also took place in forests, woods, fields, pastures, farmlands, deserts, dunes, beaches, and in other locations. ATVs are not designed to ride on paved surfaces safely. Drivers typically do not fully inflate the tires of the ATV so that the ATV can better operate off-road. Driving an ATV on paved surfaces when tires have low tire pressure is especially dangerous. The CPSC recommends that ATV users take the following safety precautions:

  • Procure training from a qualified ATV instructor
  • Wear a helmet, eye protection, boots, gloves, and long-sleeved shirts and pants
  • Only allow one rider on an ATV at a time
  • Do not drive an ATV on paved roads
  • If you do ride an ATV on paved roads, use extreme caution
  • Do not let a child under the age of 16 drives an ATV
ATV Riders May Not Have Insurance

North Carolina does not require ATV owners or riders to take out insurance policies for collisions or accidents. If an ATV driver without insurance causes an accident that resulted in your injuries, your only compensation option may be to file a civil lawsuit. Our Charlotte personal injury attorneys can discuss the pros and cons of filing a civil suit.

Unfortunately, the negligent ATV driver may not have the assets to pay for a compensation claim. If a child ATV driver negligently caused your injuries, you may be able to file a lawsuit against his or her parents. The legal doctrine of negligent entrustment allows injured parties to sue those who negligently entrust cars or ATVs to another party. If the ATV itself was defective, and the defect resulted in a collision or accident, you may be able to bring a defective product lawsuit against the ATV manufacturer.

We can Help

At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we have experience representing clients in a variety of North Carolina personal injury lawsuits. Demonstrating fault in an ATV collision can be difficult, but our attorneys are always up to the challenge. We thoroughly investigate the facts surrounding our client’s accidents and fight for their right to compensation. We now have offices conveniently located in Charlotte, Monroe and Lake Norman so contact our office today to set up your free initial consultation.

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