South Florida ATV accidents a concern as we enter the summer riding season

The Consumer Products Safety Commission has issued an advisory warning of the dangers of ATV accidents as the summer riding season enters full swing with the Memorial Day weekend.

South Florida ATV accidents can occur year-round, thanks to the great riding weather. But, even in Florida, the summer months bring the increased risk of a serious or fatal accident.

Memorial Day historically begins the summer riding season — 27 fatal ATV accidents occurred over the Memorial Day weekend last year. This year, at least 40 fatalities were reported just in the month of April, including 12 accidents involving children under the age of 16.

Each year, child deaths jump 30 percent between March and April. With the improving weather, adult deaths skyrocket 88 percent during the same time frame. July was the peak month last year, with 109 deaths reported, including 23 children and 76 adults.

“If springtime deaths and injuries are an indication of what’s to come, we urge all ATV riders, young and old, to take all necessary safety precautions,” said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. “Far too many people are losing their lives and sustaining life-threatening injuries, which in many cases are preventable. CPSC is working diligently to ensure that the ATVs on the market meet mandatory standards and to promote safe riding practices.”

With school letting out for the summer, Gregg Hollander and the staff at The Hollander Law Firm, encourage parents to talk about riding safety with their children. As a veteran South Florida child injury lawyer, Attorney Hollander understands the dangers of serious ATV accidents.

In cases where faulty design, inadequate warning labels, unclear instruction or other factors contribute to a serious ATV accident, an experienced injury lawyer can pursue a claim for damages against the manufacturer.

Additionally, manufacturers and dealers are now required by law to provide training instruction to new riders and their family members. Companies are also required to provide an incentive valued at $100 to help encourage new riders to take training offered by the ATV Safety Institute.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission urges riders to:

-Take a hands-on safety course.

-Wear protective gear.

-Obey passenger limits.

-Obey traffic laws.

-Always choose age-appropriate vehicles and gear for children.

The federal government also operates a website dedicated to ATV safety, which includes a wealth of safety information for riders, children and parents. Visit ATV Safety to learn more.