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5 WAYS TO AVOID A SERIOUS ATV ACCIDENT

By Luke Dow on October 05, 2015

For many Texans, all-terrain vehicles offer an amazing way to explore the great outdoors. Unfortunately, few people realize that ATVs are also responsible for thousands of serious accidents and fatalities each year.According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were more than 13,000 ATV-related deaths between 1982 and 2013. In 2013, there were more than 99,000 ATV-related injuries.

A significant number of these accidents involved children. According to the CPSC, approximately 25 percent of these ATV accidents involved children under the age of 16.

If you were in an ATV accident, contact the Luke Dow Law Firm for help. We can evaluate the circumstances of your crash to determine if another party's negligence played a role. If so, then Austin personal-injury attorney Luke Dow can structure your claim and help you pursue compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. Call us today at 512-518-4104 to schedule a consultation.

In the meantime, read on for five tips to help you avoid a serious ATV accident:

1. Follow All Age Guidelines

According to the CPSC, only people over the age of 16 should drive ATVs. Children younger than 16 generally lack the experience needed to operate the vehicles and may not take the necessary safety precautions.

Riding an ATV is similar to driving a car or motorcycle, and parents should treat it as such. On a related note, be sure to pick an ATV that is suitable for your size and weight.

2. Take A Safety Course

All ATV riders should take an approved safety course before heading out on the trails. Even riders with experience on other vehicles can benefit from a course that teaches the basics of ATV safety. Hands-on training will equip both first-time and experienced ATV riders with the skills to avoid obstacles.

The ATV Safety Institute offers free courses across the country. There are also some great online classes that teach students how to avoid common mistakes on ATVs.

3. Do Not Drink And Drive

ATVs are great for the holidays, but that does not mean you should operate one while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Operating an ATV after drinking alcohol is dangerous, even if you only intend to travel a short distance.

4. Stay In Contact

Always carry a communication device on you when you drive an ATV. This could be a cellphone or an appropriate two-way radio. If you have an accident on the trails, this may be the only way to call for help.

5. Stay On Designated Trails

Most ATV riders know it is dangerous to operate their vehicles on open roads. Many serious ATV accidents happen when operators try to integrate their vehicles with traffic or ride at high speeds on paved streets.

You should only operate your ATV on designated off-road trails and paths. Many people overestimate the ability of their vehicles and leave the paths, which often leads to accidents in isolated areas.

ATV crashes can be devastating, and even the safest riders can get in collisions. If you were in an ATV accident, call the Luke Dow Law Firm at 512-518-4104. An Austin personal-injury lawyer can determine if you may have valid grounds for a claim for medical expenses and lost wages.

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