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Just this summer, a Dorsey, Illinois man was killed in an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) crash in Macoupin County. Authorities said Joseph Stutz and his friends were riding ATVs together but he was alone when the accident happened on a wooded path near Shipman. The county coroner reported that the 22 year-old died of head injuries sustained in the crash.

ATVs are popular off-road vehicles, but their increasing size and power has lead to concern over injury risks. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, ATV accidents account for more than 100,000 emergency room visits each year, including more than 30,000 visits for children under 16 years old. Over the past 10 years, more than 200 children have died annually from injuries sustained on ATVs.

ATV Safety Dos and Don'ts:

To stay safe while using ATVs, follow these simple guidelines to protect yourself and fellow ATV users:

Do's:

  • Do take a hands-on safety training course before riding.
  • Do wear a helmet and eye protection at all times.
  • Do wear closed-toe shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt or jacket when riding.
  • Do ride an ATV that appropriate for your age and size.
  • Do stay on designated ATV trails and obey posted signs.
  • Do maintain a safe distance between riders.

Don'ts:

  • Don't let young or inexperienced riders operate ATVs without training and supervision.
  • Don't carry passengers- ATVs are designed for one rider only.
  • Don't drive ATVs on paved roads.
  • Don't drive ATVs at night.
  • Don't ride alone. Use a buddy system.
  • Don't ride under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

If you or a family member has been injured or killed in an ATV accident, contact a personal injury attorney to investigate any legal claims you may have.

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