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Tennessee ATV Safety: Fatal Campbell County Accident Highlights Autumn Risks

A teenager from Campbell County was recently killed in an ATV accident. The 17-year-old LaFollette youth was thrown off of his ATV while riding along Doaks Creek Road. He was taken to the University of Tennessee Medical Center where he was later pronounced dead.

The driver of the ATV, a 16-year-old Speedwell teen, was heading eastbound on that roadway when he tried to make a U-turn. That’s when his passenger fell off of the vehicle, according to KnoxNews.

Our Knoxville accident lawyers understand that fall in Tennessee is prime time for enjoying the outdoors, and that includes riding four-wheelers and all-terrain vehicles. Please keep safety your top priority. There were close to 320 people who were killed in ATV accidents in the U.S. in 2010. Another 120,000 people were injured in these accidents. In Tennessee, more than 430 people died in ATV accidents from 1982 to 2010. About 100 of these fatalities were of child riders who were under the age of 16-years-old.

Tennessee State ATV Laws:

-Both riders and passengers who ride on three-wheeled ATVs are required to ride in specific state park riding areas.

– All riders must wear helmets and eye protection at all times.

– All four-wheeled ATVs are not allowed in any state parks.

– ATVs are not allowed to be driven on the state’s highways, except to cross the road.

– Each ATV is required to be titled with the owner receiving an identification device that shall be placed on the ATV.

Remember that manufacturers build different size ATVs for use by different age groups. You should always make sure that you’re driving an ATV that is designed for your size and experience level. You should also never let children ride an ATV without adult supervision.

Nationwide, children under the age of 16 account for close to 30 percent of all ATV accident fatalities. Over the last 10 years, the number of children killed in off-road vehicle accidents has increased by more than 85 percent.

These are costly accidents, too! According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), medical treatment for riders under the age of 16 total nearly $3 million each year.

Tips for ATV Riding:

– Consider taking a hands-on training course.

– Always wear your protective gear. Wear gloves, a helmet, long pants, goggles, boots, long-sleeved clothing and proper footwear.

– Never drive your ATV on a paved road. ATVs are difficult to handle on paved roadways. This also makes collisions with cars more likely.

– Never drive an ATV with a passenger. Most ATVs are only designed to carry one person.

– Never allow children to drive or ride without an adult. Kids who are under 16 who ride on an adult ATV are about twice as likely to be injured as those riding on a youth ATV.

– Never drive an ATV under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

If you or a loved one is injured or killed in an accident, contact Hartsoe Law Firm, P.C. for a free confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call (877) 472-5657.

More Blog Entries:

Teen Driver Dies in Tennessee Car Accident, Tennessee Injury Attorney Blog, June 6, 2011

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