A recent video on Reddit has set off alarms as a woman is seen speeding on an ATV with a young child in tow before slamming into a fence. The woman, who is left seemingly disoriented, lies on the ground while the young girl rushes over with her hand on her face, presumably injured. Another child comes running up as well.
The clip, which depicts both incredibly dangerous and extremely irresponsible behavior on the part of the woman, who we cannot confirm is the parent of the young child, highlights the danger of these types of vehicles. According to state ATV fatality rate statistics, between 300 and 400 ATV-related deaths occur on US roadways each year and an estimated one third of the people killed in ATV accidents are under the age of 16.
On Saturday, a 10-year-old boy died following an ATV crash in Lawton, Iowa. The Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office says the accident happened shortly before 3 p.m. at the 7600 block of Correctionville Road. The cause and details of the crash are under investigation by the Iowa DNR and Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office.
Experts say that there is no direct cause for ATV accidents, yet many are due to the negligence or recklessness of the driver, as is the case of the woman seen in the video. Causes of ATV accidents include drunk driving, speeding, hill-climbing and vehicle rollover. Although many of these vehicles are designed to hold one passenger, and one passenger only, people often ride with one or more passengers. This can be a recipe for disaster since passengers cannot shift their weight as intuitively as drivers, which can throw the entire vehicle off-balance.
On Friday, a Whitley County High School junior died in an ATV crash in Campbell County. Troopers say Fisher Barton, 17, was driving up a steep embankment with a passenger on the back when the ATV flipped. Barton subsequently hit his head on the ground and then the ATV landed on him. Although the passenger is expected to recover, Barton, the vice president of the junior class, an F.A.A. officer and a skeet team member, died in the accident.
For more information on ATV safety, please visit the ATV Safety Institute website.