This post was created by the American Farm Bureau Federation. For more resources on ATV safety or Agricultural Safety Awareness Week, visit their website.
Across the country, county and state Farm Bureaus are making safety a priority through the Agricultural Safety Awareness Program. As part of ASAP, March 1-7 has been designated as Agricultural Safety Awareness Week. This year’s theme is “Ride Like a Pro Whenever You Go.”
During this week and throughout the year, Farm Bureau is encouraging farmers to emphasize all-terrain vehicle helmet safety. Farmers, as well as their family members and employees, should make it a habit to always wear a helmet when operating an ATV.
An ATV is valued on the farm and ranch for a wide range of chores – from fixing fences to fetching lost calves and everything in between. ATVs weigh up to 600 pounds and can reach speeds of 75 mph. Always making safety a priority on the farm can save both lives and resources by preventing incidents, injuries and lost time.
All too often, ATVs are at fault in deaths and injuries to kids. About 29,000 children under the age of 16 are treated in emergency rooms for ATV-related injuries each year.*
Ensure ATV safety with these simple, inexpensive tips:
- Always wear a DOT-approved helmet with face protection and protective gear. Helmets decrease the fatality risk by 50 percent and the chance of a non-fatal head injury by 80 percent.**
- Select the right size ATV. 95 percent of child deaths occurred when children were riding an adult-sized ATV – too large for them to handle.**
- Never carry multiple riders. 75 percent of ATV-related deaths for children under 6 involved multiple riders on a single ATV.**
- Keep ATVs for off-road use only. More than 60 percent of ATV-related youth deaths occurred while children or teens were riding on paved roads.**
- Inspect your ATV before each ride. Visit the National Ag Safety Database for a checklist – http://nasdonline.org/
Agricultural Safety Awareness Program is a part of the Farm Bureau Safety and Health Network of professionals who share an interest in identifying and decreasing safety and health risks. For more information and resources, visit the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Health & Safety page, the ASAP Facebook page or AFBF’s Pinterest board.
*ATVSafety.gov, ATV-Related Deaths and Injuries for Children Under 16.
**HealthDay News, “Adult-Sized ATVs Deadly for Kids, Report Shows,” Nov. 14, 2014.