We think we know what is safe and what isn’t, and normally we follow the rules. But when we are part of an event where a large group of people gathers together to have fun, it is easy to forget all those things we were taught and get swept up in the excitement. A story out of Texas reminds us that we must place safety first at all times.
A ten-year-old boy and his family were attending an event called Rednecks With Paychecks on March 15th, 2015 when the boy was offered the opportunity to ride an ATV. ATVs are extremely dangerous machines, but because they were part of an organized event, they must have seemed much safer to the family. Little Nicholas Torres was allowed to ride.
But just because an event is hosted on 20 acres and has organizers in charge doesn’t mean that an ATV becomes any safer for a child. Nicholas Torres crashed, and the cause of death was listed as multiple traumatic injuries.
Rednecks With Paychecks is far from the only event where people engage in unsafe activities they would normally avoid. There are hundreds of car and truck events every year where terrible injuries occur. People suffer accidents at theme parks and county fairs and thousands of other places where large groups gather.
ATV safety is very important. Some basic guidelines include:
- Always wearing a helmet that is in compliance with Department of Transportation regulations
- Never ride while under the influence
- Maintain an appropriate speed
- Only allow young people to ride on ATVs that are appropriately sized, and only allow them to ride while supervised
It is sadly simple to break that last rule. But even if you follow all the rules, terrible accidents can still occur, and Nicholas Torres’ accident is still under investigation. All too often people wear the right helmet and do the right thing, only to have mechanical failure result in tragedy. If you or someone you love has been injured in an ATV accident, it is important that the ATV be tested for mechanical failure. Please contact an attorney who can help walk you through the necessary steps of determining whether the ATV itself caused your accident.