The lawyers of Hovde Dassow + Deets have successfully handled a number of catastrophic injury claims involving all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), dirt bikes and other recreational vehicles.
All-Terrain Vehicle Injuries
The ATV has become a popular machine for both recreational and occupational use. Their popularity is increasing with time. From 1997 to 2001, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported an increase in ATV ownership of 39.5% and an increase in riding hours of 44.8%.
As ATV popularity and utility increased, injuries to riders increased. An estimated 22,648 non-fatal injuries occurred on U.S. farms to youth less than 20 years of age during 2001. Approximately 10% of these injuries were the result of ATV use by youths. In 2001, youth under 16 years of age sustained over 25% of all ATV-related injuries.
In 1988, the CPSC and the major manufacturers of ATVs entered into a consent decree intended to reduce injuries through the development of safety training programs and guidelines for ATV use. These guidelines included agreements to halt the production of 3-wheeled ATVs and to place age restrictions on ATV use by engine displacement size.
Although ATVs with engine displacements of 200CC and greater are not intended for children and youth under 16 years of age, CPSC data showed 19,770 (65%) injuries to youth under 16 occurred to drivers of these adult-sized ATVs. This demonstrated that the age restrictions implemented by the consent decree were not being followed. This continues to be the case and results in many unnecessary injuries to children.
ATV cases are generally brought under theories of negligence on the part of the driver of the vehicle and/or the person responsible for the safe supervision or the safe operation of the vehicle. Cases can also be brought against the manufacturer of certain vehicles for unreasonably dangerous design or manufacture of the product. In some cases, both personal negligence and products liability claims will figure into the same action. Our attorneys have long experience and demonstrated skill in establishing liability under both approaches and in finding insurance coverage for such losses.
We handle recreational accident cases involving vehicles such as ATVs, snowmobiles, dirt bikes, golf carts, boats, wave runners and race cars. Our case load is limited to allow us to fully investigate and develop your case against every defendant that has responsibility for an unnecessary and preventable accident, whether it’s a person who negligently operated a vehicle, a person who negligently entrusted and failed to train the operator of a vehicle, or a manufacturer of an inherently unstable and dangerous ATV.
If you have been seriously injured or lost a loved one as a result of an accident involving a vehicle such as an ATV, snowmobile, dirt bike, golf cart, boat or wave runner, we can help you. To talk to one of our lawyers, please call 317-818-3111 or fill out our online form. If you choose not to go forward or if you do not recover damages, there are absolutely no charges or attorney fees.