Dallas ATV & UTV Attorneys
All-terrain vehicles, or ATVs, are three- or four-wheeled vehicles used for recreational or work-related purposes such as off-roading, hauling materials and equipment through wooded areas, or riding on nature trails. ATVs and UTV’s (a similar vehicle but with seats for 2 to 4 persons) can travel up to 55 MPH and can weigh up to a quarter of a ton, and with new technology, ATVs and UTV’s are becoming faster, stronger, and heavier. The state of Texas requires that those operating an ATV or UTV must be at least 14 years of age or be accompanied by and under the direct supervision of a parent or guardian. Unfortunately, youths are often not trained to drive such powerful vehicles. As a result, a majority of ATV and UTV accidents involve youths under the age of 18. Drivers under the age of 15 are over 2 times more likely to lose control of their ATVs.
The main risk of driving an ATV is overturning the vehicle. Sharp corners and uneven terrain can often lead to the ATV flipping over, which may cause:
- Head and Neck Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Broken Bones
- Brain Injury
- Even, Death
Some 75% of ATV accidents result in serious damage to the head or spinal cord of the accident victim. Head injuries are a major cause of serious life-threatening or lifelong physical problems and ailments. Injury to the spinal cord can result in paralysis of the entire body for life.
In the event an accident occurs because of a manufacturing or design defect, you may be eligible for compensation for your losses. The ATV accident lawyers at The Barber Law Firm can ascertain who is to blame for your injuries and can even help you seek retribution.
ATV AND UTV LAWS IN TEXAS
The state of Texas does not require that ATV’s and UTV’s be registered, but you are required to obtain and properly affix a Texas State OHV (off-highway vehicle) decal for your vehicle before riding it on any public or private lands which have received Texas Parks & Wildlife grant money. It is also required that all operators and passengers of ATV’s and UTV’s be wearing helmets and protective eyewear and that the vehicles be equipped with various safety equipment including working brakes, a spark arrestor, and head and tail lights when operating in low light situations. Operators are required to carry a safety certificate obtained either through the state of Texas or another state.
ATV’s and UTV’s and generally not permitted on public roads in Texas unless you are crossing the road to meet back up with your off-road trail, or are a rancher, public utility worker, or law officer.
SAFETY TIPS FOR ATV DRIVERS
The majority of ATV deaths and injuries are preventable. There are several governmental debates currently occurring over how to create federal guidelines for ATV safety. ATV accidents are so dramatically on the rise that some type of regulation seems inevitable. Until that time, though, children and young people are continuing to suffer the effects of ATV accidents.
Like a motorcycle, ATVs don’t offer any physical protection should you wreck, so it’s important to implement these safety measures:
- Wear a helmet.
- Take an ATV instructional class.
- Have an adult supervise.
- Ride a slower, lighter ATV.
ATVs lack government safety regulations despite the growing number of injuries per year, so it’s important to take preventative measures to keep yourself and your family safe.
CONSULT AN ATV ACCIDENT LAWYER TODAY
The law professionals at The Barber Law Firm are here for you. In most cases, we offer our legal services on a contingency basis, meaning we only get paid if you do. We also offer FREE consultations for every case. Don’t suffer through your injuries alone; contact The Barber Law Firm today for expert counsel and representation.
To learn more about your rights following a four-wheeler accident, contact the ATV accident lawyers at The Barber Law Firm at 972-231-5800, or fill out our online form.