This news release says the reason for a reduction in the number of injuries caused by ATVs is unknown. However, many people would say part of the reason is the lawsuits filed by consumer lawyers that have forced manufacturers to increase safety features on these vehicles. That’s also why our automobiles today are so much safer than 30 years ago. Sometimes it just takes suing manufacturers to get them to do the right thing.
The Los Angeles Times reports in its “Science Now” section that the CDC released a report that revealed ATV injuries among children age 15 and under increased 35% between 2001 and 2004, but declined 37% between 2004 and 2010. Researchers are unsure what caused the decrease in injuries, because overall ATV use “more than doubled” over the course of the decade, “with an estimated 10.6 million four-wheeled ATVs in use in 2010.” However, as the Times notes, while the “numbers of ATVs increased, fewer young people may have ridden the rugged, four-wheeled recreational vehicles as the decade wore on. During the economic recession of the mid-2000s, new ATV sales declined – and with them, perhaps, new riders.”
Reuters reports Ruth Shults, with the CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, and her colleagues looked at information provided by a US injury surveillance system, which recorded emergency visits to 66 hospitals nationwide. The data, published Monday in Pediatrics, showed boys were hurt twice as often in ATV accidents as girls. Additionally, broken bones were reported in about a quarter of ER visits, and about one in eight children had to be hospitalized. Reuters notes that the American Academy of Pediatrics advises banning children under 16 from using ATVs.
From the American Association for Justice news release.