A new study suggests that all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) have no place on
California roadways, even if they are unpaved. It found that riding on
any type of roadway was significantly more dangerous than riding off the road.
The study examined U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) fatality
data from ATV crashes from 1982 through 2012. It found that over half
of all ATV-related deaths take place on roadways. In addition, non-fatal
roadway crashes result in more serious injuries than those off the road.
Of all roadway ATV deaths during the study period, 42 percent occurred
on unpaved surfaces. In addition, more than half of the ATV roadway deaths
in 23 states took place on unpaved road surfaces.
According to the researchers, the results are particularly concerning because “a number of jurisdictions
have passed or have considered legislation allowing ATVs on public roadways,
sometimes limiting them to those unpaved, arguing that they are safe for
ATVs.” However, the crash statistics confirm that ATVs are not designed
to be used on roadways.
“The narrow track, relatively high center of gravity, lack of rear
differential on most models of ATVs, and tires designed specifically for
off-road use all contribute to extremely complex rider-ATV-roadway surface
dynamics,” study co-author, Dr. Charles Jennissen, stated, “and
these dynamics appear to significantly increase the risk of ATV crashes
and resulting injuries on both paved and unpaved roads.”
The study authors are calling on ATV manufacturers to alter their safety
warnings in light of their findings and explicitly state the dangers of
roadway riding regardless of the road surface type.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a San Diego ATV
accident, don’t hesitate to
contacta San Diego personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.