Study analyzes child use of ATVs

New Orleans – Children younger than 16 experience about 40 percent of all-terrain vehicle injuries and fatalities in the United States, according to a new study presented Oct. 22 at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference & Exhibition.

Researchers interviewed children hospitalized following an ATV crash between 2004 and 2009, as well as their parents. Among the findings:

  • About 35 percent of children wore a helmet at the time of injury, and nearly 60 percent resumed riding within six months.
  • Slightly more than one-third of the injuries were to the head and neck, and the second most common type was fractures at 30.6 percent.
  • 61 percent of children reported they had seen a label on the ATV warning against use by children younger than 16.

“Although ATVs have surged in popularity over the past several years, they pose significant dangers for children 16 and under who simply do not have the physical strength, cognitive skills, maturity or judgment to safely operate ATVs,” researcher Rebeccah L. Brown, M.D., from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, said in a press release.

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