Four people, ranging in age from three to 56, were seriously injured in ATV accidents over the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Residents in the area have complained about increased ATV traffic with over 500 ATVs spotted over the holiday.
State law requires people born after July 1, 1987, to complete an ATV safety course, but serious injuries continue to occur.
Risks of ATV use
Bruises, bumps and fractures are the most common ATV injuries, but more serious injuries, such as injuries to the pelvis and spine, happen. Rollovers are often responsible for the most serious ATV injuries, including concussions and other head injuries. Children are particularly at risk and account for 30% of all ATV-related deaths and emergency room-treated injuries.
How to stay safe on an ATV
ATV riders can reduce their risk of injury by following safety guidelines:
- Always wear a helmet, long sleeves, goggles, over-the-ankle boots, long pants and gloves
- Do not ride while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Choose an ATV that is appropriate for your age and size
- Ride at a safe speed and only on designated trails
- Do not ride on paved roads
- Do not carry more passengers than your ATV can accommodate
- Supervise riders under the age of 16
Minnesota riders between the ages of 10 and 15 must complete both an online safety course and a hands-on safety class. Riders over the age of 16 only need to complete an online course. Alternatively, you may complete the ATV Rider Course that the All-Terrian Vehicle Safety Institute offers.
Rollovers and collisions with motor vehicles can cause serious injuries and deaths. It is important to follow safety guidelines when operating or interacting with an ATV.