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Queens ATV Accident

All-terrain vehicles, generally known as ATVs, hit the consumer market in the 1970s. From the time of their introduction into the consumer market there have been safety concerns. Initially most ATVs had 3 wheels. In 1987 production of 3-wheeled ATVs ceased due to safety concerns. However, the 3-wheeled vehicles already sold where not recalled. Furthermore, many safety problems remained even with the 4-wheeled models. In 2009 alone, there were approximately 100,000 injuries and 300 fatalities as a result of ATV accidents. Such injuries include paralysis, head injuries, broken bones and back injuries. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there have been over 9000 ATV related deaths over the past 30 years. While there are many possible causes of ATV accidents, far too often such accidents are caused by negligence. If you are in need of a personal injury lawyer because you or a loved were injured in an ATV accident due to the negligence of someone else, it is vital to immediately contact a Queens ATV accident lawyer who will explain your options for pursuing a personal injury claim or wrongful death claim to recover medical expenses, lost wages and other losses associate with the accident.

Danger of ATVs

All terrain vehicles are motorized vehicles that typically have four large tires, with a seat in the middle that a rider straddles while steering by the handlebars. They are meant to be used off-road or on dirt roads, not on paved roads or highways. In fact, most jurisdictions do not allow ATVs on public road or highways. Historically they were almost solely used on by farmers as a type of work vehicle. Because of the increasing popularity of ATVs as recreational vehicles, in recent years manufacturers have designed faster, stronger, and heavier ATVs, capable of causing severe damage.

  • High center of gravity. Weighing more than 800 pounds, ATVs have a high center of gravity. This means that like SUVs, ATVs are prone to roll over.
  • Designed to travel on harsh terrain. Because ATVs often travel on harsh terrain that includes rough surfaces, rocks, and debris, they are more prone to travel over terrain that will cause the driver to lose control and end up in an accident.
  • Few safety features. Because they have no roll bars, safety cages, or seatbelts, when they tip over riders are thrown. In some cases the ATV ends up rolling over on top of the riders.

ATV accidents can result in serious physical injuries that include: back injury, brain injury, burn injury, broken collar bone, amputation and spinal cord injury. Of the serious personal injuries caused as a result of ATV accidents, statistics have shown that approximately 75% cause severe damage to the head, neck and spine, often resulting in long term disability or paralysis.

Unfortunately many ATV accidents involve children under the age of 10. People view ATVs as toys—similar to ride-on battery operated vehicles sold by toy stores. They are not. They are more similar to real automobiles or motorcycles. For example, in early 2017 the young daughter of a celebrity was seriously injured in an ATV accident. According to reports the young girl was driving an ATV on private property when she suddenly swerved to avoid debris. The ATV rolled over into pond with the girl submerged.

Negligent use of ATVs

In general, ATVs are only permitted to be operated on the private property of the ATV owner. N.Y. VAT. LAW § 2403. Thus, except under very specific circumstances all-terrain vehicles cannot be operated on public road, public land, or another's private property. If someone drives an ATV on a public highway and causes an accident the ATV driver would probably be ticketed and presumed responsible for the accident. Many ATV accidents are caused because the driver was driving unreasonably fast. While there is no specific speed limit for ATVs operating on private property, New York law requires that the operator drive at a prudent, reasonable speed. N.Y. VAT. LAW § 2404. If a driver operates an all-terrain vehicle at a speed that is not safe for the terrain conditions and as a result a accident occurs, the ATV driver's negligence caused the accident. Unfortunately, because most all-terrain vehicle operators do not wear helmets injuries from ATV accidents can be serious including head injury and spinal cord injury.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

ATV accidents can be tragic. The can leave victims with catastrophic injuries resulting in significant medical bills and loss of income. If you have been injured in an ATV accident it is important to speak to our legal team as soon as possible. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates have years of experience handling personal injury cases stemming from vehicle accidents, including car accidents, truck accidents, and other types of vehicle accidents. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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