Articles Posted in All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs)


This topic came to mind just recently as I was driving through my residential neighborhood. I saw a four wheel ATV vehicle being driven at a high rate of speed by two teenagers. It was dark out and the ATV was being operated on the sidewalk. The operation of the ATV was dangerous in that it was being driven on a sidewalk, it was moving at a high rate of speed, the ATV lacked headlights, and the operator and occupant of the ATV were not wearing helmets. The operation of the ATV was also a danger to other motorists, bicyclists, pedestrians, and especially any children that may be in the area. While ATV vehicles may be great fun for children and teenagers, this fun often time comes at the risk of serious personal injuries and even a wrongful death of occupants, pedestrians, or bicyclist involved in a Florida ATV Accident. Owners and operators of ATVs should make sure that the vehicles are operated in a designated area where they do not present danger to pedestrians and bicyclists or other drivers. Furthermore ATV activities should be limited to a certain age group, should be supervised at all times, and should always involve safe speeds, safe terrain, and helmets.

The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Automobile Accidents, Medical Bills and Treatment and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury. David Wolf is a Florida Child Injury Lawyer who has devoted his entire legal career to the protection and enforcement of the rights of children. When a child is injured, Mr. Wolf helps give a voice to injured children and their families. At Wood, Atter & Wolf, we are At Your Side – On Your Side when you need an atttorney to see compensation and damages for an injured child.

atv%20all%20terrain%20vehicle%20red%20in%20mud.jpgIn Florida, ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) are popular with children, teens, and adults. Florida has good weather year round and many locations where a rider can take an ATV for fun and adventure. Unfortunately, many children and adults are injured every year while operating or riding on an All Terrain Vehicle (ATV).

In Levy County, Florida, two fatal ATV related accidents were reported. One involved a 12 year old girl – Cheyenne Ellis – from Trenton, Florida. She was operating a Yamaha Rhino ATV at the Gulf Hammock Hunt Club. A 5 year old boy – Brody Ellis from Cedar Key, Florida, was a passenger on the ATV. It was reported that Cheyenne lost control of the ATV, she was ejected, and then the ATV landed on her. Tragically, Cheyenne died as a result of the ATV related injuries. The boy suffered personal injuries as well. He was taken to Shands – University of Florida – and treated for his injuries.

In an unrelated ATV incident in Levy County as well, Lucas Benjamin Corbitt was operating a Yamaha ATV that hit an embankment and overturned the ATV. As a result of this ATV accident, Mr. Corbitt died. See Two Fatal Accidents Reported in Levy County, Florida.

caution.bmpATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) are popular both for recreation and fun. However, pediatricians and other medical specialists say that young children do not have the strength, coordination or judgment necessary to safely operate powerful ATVs. Many ATVs have gotten bigger, faster and stronger over the past decade. Simply stated, many of the larger and stronger ATVs are not safe for children.

For example, an 11-year-old girl was driving an ATV and crashed it into a water pipe at a local church in Brandon, Florida. According to Deputies, Donald Leet, 27, allowed the child to drive the ATV because he had a glass of wine with dinner, and his driver’s license was suspended. When the deputies responded to the emergency call at First Baptist Church of Brandon, water was shooting 50-feet into the air. Officials said that the girl and her seven-year-old sister were upset, but nobody was injured as a result of the ATV accident. The child said that Leet was teaching her how to drive, said deputies.

ATV accidents are responsible for thousands of fatalities and serious injuries to adults and children each year in Jacksonville and throughout the United States. The risk for injury is high due to riding conditions and rider’s exposure. In addition, ATV rollovers are another cause or factor in ATV accidents that make them so dangerous. Parents and children can reduce the risk of ATV accidents by understanding the common causes and risks associated with ATVs.

ATV.jpgAlthough ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) might seem inherently dangerous to parents, but to children, they look like they are a lot of fun to ride. Other children ride them, and there are even parks and trails throughout the State of Florida specifically designated for this recreational activity. In addition, families can also rent them while on vacation at most popular resorts, so how can ATVs be dangerous? These are all factors that overcome a parent’s natural instinct about the possible dangers of ATVs and children, and also make ATVs a good candidate for a hidden danger.

In Jacksonville, Florida, an eleven-year-old boy fell off an ATV and died. According to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, James ‘Colton’ Jackson was riding with a ten-year-old on an ATV that was driven by a 14-year-old when they hit a bump in the road. Jackson was ejected backwards off the vehicle and sustained life-threatening injuries from the fall. He was taken to Shands Jacksonville Hospital for treatment, but he sadly died. None of the boys were wearing helmets, said authorities.

ATV accidents and injuries are not rare. According to statistics, there are about 100 to 00 ATV-related deaths in children and teens under the age of 16 each year and an estimated 40,000 injuries treated in emergency rooms.


In St. Johns, Duval, Clay, and Nassau County Florida, ATVs are quite popular. Throughout Florida, there are plenty of areas to ride an ATV. Typically, a few hours spent on an ATV is fun and nobody gets hurt. Unfortunately, there have been many incidents reported in Florida involving accidents and injuries involving ATVs. It is important when a person owns or operates an ATV to do so with safety and caution. This is especially true when teens or children operate or ride on an ATV. While not all accidents can be prevented, consistent adult supervision can go a long way to preventing many ATV accidents or incidents involving teens and children. In St. John County, Florida, the Florida Times Union reported that an ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) overturned and caused personal injuries to three teens (ages 11 through 14). The injured children were treated at Flagler Hospital. The personal injuries as reported were not life threatening. The incident took place off of County Road 214. The operator / driver of the ATV stated that the four wheel ATV overturned at a curve in the road. There may be charges or citations that result from the accident in the form of operating an ATV on the roadway and without a license as well as for careless driving. See Three Youths Injured in St. Johns County ATV Accident. The owner of the ATV reported that the vehicle was taken without his permission. The owner is the father of the teen who was driving or operating the ATV.


An all terrain vehicle (ATV) accident occurring in Pasco County, Florida sent four teens to the hospital. The teenagers remain in the hospital – one in serious condition, two in stable condition and one in critical condition. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the accident is being treated as a criminal hit-and-run.

The FHP (Florida Highway Patrol) reported that the operator of the ATV pulled into the path of a Ford Ranger pick up truck. The pick up truck collided with the front of the ATV, throwing off all four teens. If you would like to read more about this accident please see 4 teens remain in hospital after hit-and-run accident in Pasco County, Florida.

ATVs are powerful devices. They are also attractive to youths because one does not need a driver’s license to operate an ATV. Parents who allow their children to ride or drive ATVs and owners of ATVs should make sure that children wear approved gear, especially helmets. Helmets dramatically decrease the severity of personal injuries and in some ATV accidents prevent a serious head injury from occurring. percentage of sustaining serious personal injuries and death. If you would like to read a more in depth analysis about the dangers of ATVs please see CBS News Reports on Dangers of Personal Injury to Children from ATV (All Terrain Vehicles).

playground%20kids%20jumping%20in%20air%20silhouettes.jpgChildren have a lot more free time to engage in horseplay, activities or sports during their summer vacation and, as a result, emergency room visits increase during the summer months. Many of these accidents, however, are preventable. A release by Rapides Regional Medical Center revealed that last year the hospital treated about 50,000 patients, 14,517 of which were infants, children and teenagers.

The release also stated that the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 1-20 was drowning. Because participation in water activities is higher during the summer months, parents, guardians, babysitters and daycare providers and workers should maintain constant and close supervision. Basic water safety tips include: never leave children unattended around water, children should always wear a life jacket when around water, home swimming pools should be surrounded by a safety fence and all entrances to the pool should be locked and be made inaccessible to children.

Kids also like to ride bikes, skates or skateboard. Therefore, another easy way to prevent common injuries is helmet use. By wearing a helmet a child can decrease their risk of death by 42% and risk of head injury by 62%

ATV.jpgAccording to Florida Statutes, ATVs can only be operated during the daytime on unpaved roadways where the posted speed limit is less than 35 miles per hour by a licensed driver, or by a minor under the supervision of a licensed driver. Walton County, Florida takes it one step further, prohibiting any use of ATVs except on private property.

But the Walton County Sherriff’s Office has been inundated with calls from concerned residents lately, who report that four or five young people have been spotted driving at high speeds down Walton County Highway 1084 and in the county dirt pit behind the community center. Driving an ATV on public property in Walton County is not permitted, and is considered a second degree misdemeanor. The fine for violating the ordinance is $250.

Young people are especially likely to be injured by their own carelessness while driving an ATV; Florida statutes concerning ATVs have been passed for the protection of drivers and bystanders alike. These injuries from ATV accidents include fractures, abrasions, lacerations, head trauma, and in some instances death. Some ATV accidents can be avoided by following Florida statutes, driving at safe speeds, choosing roadways carefully, and paying attention to weather conditions.


Glen Maxey of Fort Myers, Florida was arrested for drunk driving by deputies when Maxey’s ex-wife reported that she had witnessed him put one of their children on his lap while driving his swamp buggy earlier in the day. She said that he was driving erratically and one of the children fell out, badly bruising his back and causing him to vomit. Maxey admitted to having a hard day and drinking a few beers before driving the children around in the swamp buggy.

Accidents caused by drunk driving are so easily preventable. It is very frustrating to DUI related automobile accidents and related injuries making news headlines day after day. Alcohol impairs not only a person’s motor skills, but also his judgment – which leads many people to believe they are “OK to drive” even when they are putting the lives of their own children, not to mention other drivers, on the line.

To date, Maxey has only been charged with drunk driving, but child endangerment or child abuse charges may be forthcoming. You can read more about this Fort Myers, Florida child injury case at Child injured in alleged DUI, swamp buggy incident.


ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) are very popular in North Florida as well as other areas of the State and the country. I actually grew up riding a three wheel ATV at my father’s plant nursery in South Florida. I do not recall any accidents or incidents with the ATV but I do recall almost tipping and crashing a few times. When children operate an ATV, it is vital that there is proper instruction and rules as well as supervision. When adults are operating an ATV, it is up to the adult to keep a look out as to surface conditions, speed, balance, and other safety measures. Some ATV accidents are wholly unexpected while others can be avoided with slower driving, better choice of surface areas, day time versus night time riding, and other safety measures. In St. Johns, Florida, the Florida Times Union newspaper website reported that Ronald Drawdy was taken to Shands Jacksonville Hospital with serious personal injuries after an ATV crash on the Bartram Air Park property. Deputies reported that alcohol may have played a role in the incident. An investigation will be conducted into the facts and circumstances regarding these injuries. It was not reported who was driving or operating the ATV at the time of the incident. William Byrd, III, was treated at Flagler Hospital in St. Augustine, Florida. Byran Cannon was treated for injuries at the scene of the ATV crash. You can read more about this ATV crash at Man Critical after St. Johns ATV Crash.

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