Flying around corners, hitting jumps, and even just cruising through the fields on an ATV is all fun and games until someone gets hurt. Unfortunately, far too many people get hurt riding ATVs.
People just don’t seem to care about ATV safety, and that lack of concern causes an astounding number of injuries. People need to educate themselves on ATV safety.
In 2016 alone 101,200 ATV injuries lead to emergency department visits. That’s 101,200 too many injuries, and the number doesn’t include people who didn’t seek treatment.
That’s why today, we want to talk about ATV safety tips. Let’s take a look at the top five safety tips to avoid getting hurt on ATVs.
ATV Safety Gear
First thing’s first. You need safety gear every time you ride your ATV. Yes, every single time. Helmets saved 1,859 lives in 2016. When you ride, wear the following gear:
Helmet: Wear an ATV helmet that’s certified by the U.S. Department of Transportation or the Snell Memorial Foundation.
Goggles: Goggles protect your eyes from twigs, dirt, bugs, and more. Driving an ATV with impaired vision is extremely dangerous.
Long-sleeve Shirts and Pants: Covering your limbs helps prevent abrasions in the event you fall off your ATV.
Gloves: Gloves help you grip the ATV’s handles as well as protect your hands from the elements.
The Pre-Ride Inspection
Always inspect your ATV before riding. Even small mechanical problems can cause huge issues.
Brakes: Slowly hit the ATV’s throttle and then the brake to ensure you’re able to stop.
Handlebars: Make sure your ATV’s steering is in working order.
Tires: Always check for flats and also check the tire pressure.
Fluids: Top-off oil, gas, brake fluid, etc. before you go riding.
Stay off the Paved Roads
ATVs aren’t meant for pavement. Not only do the tires not grip asphalt well, but you’re also moving much slower than most motorists. What’s more, people don’t expect ATVs on the roads.
It’s all too common for cars to accidentally clip unseen ATVs and send them spiraling onto the roadside.
Don’t Overburden Your ATV
Riding ATVs is often a social activity and most people don’t have enough ATVs for everyone to ride at one time. However, don’t get tempted to ride tandem.
Most ATVs can safely secure only one rider at a time. Riding tandem on one seat is an excellent way to accidentally fall off your ATV. Unless you’re riding a vehicle with two seats, keep it to one rider per ATV.
Don’t Ride When You’re Tired
Never ride your ATV when you’re tired. In fact, never operate any vehicle when you’re low on sleep. Not only do you risk falling asleep at the wheel, but fatigue impacts your reflexes as well.
If You Do Need a Doctor
We’re here to help. Our staff of trained medical professionals can help you recover from an ATV accident. Slips, spills, falls, scrapes, cuts, and bruises all happen. When they do, make sure you’re in good hands with Coastal Urgent Care of Thibodaux, and always use ATV safety equipment.