WBOY reported on June 16, that West Virginia leads the nation in ATV accidents. West Virginia currently has the highest death rates due to ATV accidents. It is important to note that many injuries and deaths can be prevented by taking the proper precautions
Hearing of an ATV accident and the tragedy that results is something that happens too frequently in West Virginia. WBOY reported that, many injuries and deaths from ATVs are from children riders. WVU Safety and Health Extension’s ATV safety awareness course, mentioned in the report, provides ATV education services and curriculum to 4-H that teaches people to operate these vehicles safely. Additionally, WVU Safety and Health Extension states that many of these accidents can be prevented if parents supervise children under 16 at all times while on an ATV. On WVU Safety and Health Extension’s ATV Safety webpage, there were several things that they stated that adults need to check on and make sure their children have certain things before letting them go out on an ATV:
[The child] is the appropriate size for the machine he or she will use.
Has an ATV that is working correctly.
Does not operate the machine after dark or in poor weather conditions.
Wears a U.S. Department of Transportation-approved helmet with eye protection.
Wears long pants and long sleeves.
Carries a cell phone to call an adult in case there is a problem.
Many of the fatalities that occur in West Virginia, both children and adults, happen on public roads. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and Highway Loss Data Institute, West Virginia has the highest rate of death among people who ride their ATV on public roads.On the WBOY interviewed Lieutenant Forbes of the Granville Police Department, and he stated that ATVs were not intended to be used on the roads. For this reason it is important to avoid riding and ATV on the roads.
It is important for anyone who wants to ride a motorcycle to receive the proper training, abide by the rules for ATVs, and to always wear a helmet. Remember that taking safety precautions and knowing how to operate the ATV can prevent accidents and save lives.
For more information on WBOY’s story click here.