Pennsylvania ATV Accident Victims Have the Right to Pursue Compensation for Their Injuries
In the warm summer months, many people choose to go four-wheeling on ATVs, or all-terrain vehicles. As a leisure activity, driving ATVs is a popular pastime, but it does carry the risk of serious harm should a collision take place. Increasing safety among ATV drivers and riders is important, and Pennsylvania laws specifically address how to safely operate an ATV in order to avoid a Pennsylvania ATV accident and resulting harm.
As with other motor vehicle collisions, victims who are injured in an ATV accident have the potential to bring a personal injury claim under Pennsylvania law against the at-fault driver. The main issue is causation and determining who caused the accident. Assuming that the victim was not at fault for the accident, they may choose to pursue a negligence claim against the defendant. This would require showing that the defendant owed them a duty of care, breached this duty, and caused the accident that led to the victim’s losses and damages. According to law, ATV drivers are prohibited from speeding above posted limits, and they are instructed not to drive “in any careless way” that endangers others. An accident victim may set forth evidence that the driver was speeding at the time of the collision, and this fact may support a finding that the driver breached their duty of care.
After proving the legal fault of another individual, ATV accident victims may recover medical costs, lost income, property repairs, and emotional pain and suffering damages. Often, the circumstances surrounding ATV recreational accidents include the use of drugs or alcohol. In Pennsylvania, it is against the law to operate an ATV while intoxicated. If the victim sets forth evidence that the defendant ATV driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident, this may support a finding of punitive damages, in addition to other compensatory damages.
In some situations, drivers of ATVs may be at fault for their own accidents. They may not have received proper training or understand how the vehicle works on certain terrain. Unfortunately, children can suffer injuries in ATV accidents when driving or riding in these machines that are meant for people 16 and older. If your child has been hurt in an ATV accident and was not properly supervised, the owner’s insurer may be legally responsible for the resulting damages. Pennsylvania law prohibits ATV owners from permitting the unsafe operation of their vehicle by those who are underage or who otherwise are incapable of safely driving the vehicle.
ATV accidents can also be caused by manufacturing defects. A product liability lawsuit provides a means to recover compensation for injuries when equipment failure has led to a crash. For example, a rider who is thrown from a vehicle due to defective brakes may have a legal claim against the manufacturer if an inability to stop led to their accident and injuries.
If you or someone close to you has been injured in an ATV accident, contact the Needle Law Firm to learn more about your legal rights. Pennsylvania law provides legal remedies for accident victims following a vehicle collision. To learn more, call our office at (570) 344-1266 or contact us online. We can schedule a free consultation with a skilled injury attorney and begin the process of protecting your legal rights.