With summer fully upon us, it’s time to take advantage of the many outdoor activities Georgia has to offer. Whether it’s biking at Skidaway Island State Park, fly fishing on the Chattahoochee River or rock climbing at Tallulah Gorge, our state is full of adventures for anyone who’s willing to look.
One popular activity for fun-seekers is riding all-terrain vehicles, or ATVs. Taking an ATV out for a spin can be a great way to spend an afternoon, but it’s also important to take every precaution to avoid accidents and injuries. Recently, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released a public service announcement regarding safe and responsible use of ATVs.
The CPSC’s news release warns the public about the dangers of taking ATV vehicles onto paved public roads. The organization urges all ATV riders to stay off highways and paved public roads for their own safety, explaining that 100,000 people suffer injuries and 650 people lose their lives in ATV-type vehicle accidents each year.
In the announcement, Ann Marie Buerkle, Acting Chairman of the CPSC, reminds the public that, “Off-road vehicles are not designed to be driven on paved surfaces, and collisions with cars and other on-road vehicles can be deadly for ATV operators.”
Ms. Buerkle also noted that although some cities and states permit people to drive an ATV on paved public roads, the CPSC advises all owners and operators to avoid doing so. Overall, the danger is too high—driving on the same road as cars, trucks or buses puts riders at significant risk for a motor vehicle accident that could result in injury or even death.
I was hit by a car while riding my ATV; what should I do?
If you were hit by another vehicle while riding on an ATV, there are a few things you should do.
First, call your local police and file an incident report. You will want an official record of the accident for your files.
Next, take pictures: of your vehicle, of the other vehicle, of yourself or your passenger and of your safety equipment. Keep the ATV, helmet, and any other safety equipment in a safe place.
Finally, contact a Georgia injury lawyer who has experience handling car accidents. If you can, bring the police report, your medical records and the helmet to your initial meeting, so your lawyer can review the documentation. If there is a defect in the ATV or the helmet, you may be able to make a claim for compensation against the manufacturer of either product.
At HLM, we thoroughly investigate the scenes of vehicle crashes. This allows us to see how and where the collision happened, and to check for additional proof of fault by other drivers.
Here at Harris Lowry Manton LLP, our injury attorneys are concerned about the safety of all ATV drivers and riders. If you were injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, we can help you with your legal options. Call us today at 404-961-7650 at our Atlanta office, or in Savannah at 912-651-9967, or fill out our contact form.
Steve Lowry is an award-winning litigator who has secured record-setting jury verdicts on behalf of his clients. A passionate advocate for individuals who have been harmed by the actions of others, Steve has won numerous top 10 verdicts in Georgia.
Read more about Stephen G. Lowry here.