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Why is ATV Safety So Important?
Wearing Protective Gear while Operating an ATV
Drivers and passengers should always wear protective gear when they are operating an All Terrain Vehicle. Protective gear includes padded jackets and pants and a helmet. Sometimes goggles are recommended if you plan on driving your all terrain vehicle through mud or water. If mud or water is splashed into your eyes and you temporarily lose visibility, you can crash your all terrain vehicle and cause serious injury.
The guidelines for safely operating an all terrain vehicle are quite similar to the guidelines for safely operating any other vehicle. While your ATV may be able to be drive at top speeds, the faster you go the more likely that a crash or other problem will cause serious injury. If you are unfamiliar with the terrain or with your ATV, you may want to drive slowly at first and increase speed only when you are comfortable with the terrain and with how your vehicle handles. High speeds can quickly cause drivers to lose control, and most ATV related deaths and injuries are caused by drivers who are going too fast with their ATV.
Age Limits for Operation
Most manufacturers suggest that individuals be sixteen years of age or older before they are allowed to drive an ATV. Especially in difficult to terrain, operating an all terrain vehicle takes a certain level of experience and responsibility to avoid causing serious injury to the drivers and passengers. Often, children who are younger than sixteen are not aware of the power underneath the hood of their all terrain vehicle. Children may become reckless with their ATVs and try to perform feats that are too difficult or challenging. If the terrain is relatively flat and free of obstacles, a younger child may be able to operate an ATV under careful adult supervision.
Knowing the Terrain
One of the most important ways to make sure you are operating an ATV safely is to know the terrain that you are traveling before you take your ATV for a spin. Often, injuries are caused by individuals who head blindly into a terrain and find themselves unable to navigate difficult terrain with their ATV. If you have terrain that features unexpected ravines, sharp turns, close set trees, or surprising water features, you may flip your All Terrain Vehicle and cause serious injury to yourself or to your passengers. By familiarizing yourself with the terrain you intend to use your ATV on, you can avoid dangerous areas and know exactly when you need to decelerate to avoid flipping your ATV.
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