ATV Injuries in Children
I’m Ed Smith, a Stockton Personal Injury Lawyer. Extreme sports are an excellent source of both exercise and entertainment in this country. However, due to the nature of these sports, it is critical to ensure that proper safety precautions are taken. Recently, a review article was published that discussed some of the injuries that children can have as a result of ATVs and the implications for these injuries going forward.
The article published by a team of medical specialists discussed some of the serious injuries that children are prone to sustain while riding an ATV. Like car accidents, the severity of the accidents that children sustain while riding an ATV can vary. Some kids may only suffer scrapes and bruises as a result of a crash. However, like cars, ATVs are also prone to rollover accidents. When ATVs roll over, there isn’t any metal frame to separate the rider from the ground. As a result, children can sustain traumatic brain injuries. These happen because the head is the highest point over the ATV and often strikes the ground first in an ATV accident. The article also discussed that helmets can sharply decrease the chances of suffering a traumatic brain injury in a crash.
Other common injuries that children can sustain while riding an ATV include bone fractures. Some of the common fractures include:
- a broken humerus
- fractures of the radius and ulna
- a fractured tibia
The prognosis of these fractures can vary depending on the severity of the injury.
Prognosis of Injuries in Children
The prediction of these injuries in children will vary depending on a couple of different factors. First, the prognosis of the bone fracture will depend on whether or not the fracture is displaced. If the fracture has been replaced, the child will require surgery to place the bone back into place. After this, the injury will need a cast to immobilize the bones while they heal. Sometimes, these fractures can go right through the growth plate. This can lead to issues with growth down the road, possibly leading to asymmetric limb lengths. The prognosis of traumatic brain injuries can vary as well. Some of the brain injuries may not leave any chronic complications while others can be devastating. This depends on the location of the brain injury, the degree of the damage, the presence or absence of bleeding, and any possible associated fracture of the skull. Traumatic brain injuries could lead to permanent, life-altering changes and should be prevented if at all possible.
Complications of Injuries from ATVs
Depending on the type of injury that the child sustained, there could be a host of complications that a child could develop.
- Children who have suffered fractures through the growth plate could have limbs that grow to be different lengths. Damage to a growth plate can stop the growth of that limb in its tracks. If this happens in the legs, children will develop an asymmetric gait.
- Over time, this difference in forces will lead to a curvature of the spine that could compress nerves and lead to other problems, such as pain.
If a child has sustained a traumatic brain injury, this could lead to other complications as well.
- Damage to the frontal lobe could lead to difficulty reading emotions, problems exercising proper judgment, and severe mood swings.
- Injuries to the occipital lobe could lead to vision loss.
- Damage to the motor regions of the brain could impact the sensory perception of limbs in space, coordination, and movement of limbs in general.
Because of the severe nature of these complications, it is vital for children to stay as safe as possible on an ATV. This will help prevent these injuries from occurring in the first place.
Safety on ATVs Comes First
The most important learning point from this study is that prevention of injuries comes first. There are multiple safety precautions that children should take whenever they ride an ATV.
- Helmets should always be worn – Helmets can sometimes be itchy and uncomfortable. However, they have been designed to prevent the severe effects of an impact to the head should the rider fall or crash.
- Protective gear – The padding and protection are vital because it not only cushions impacts with the ground but can also prevent road rash.
Personal Injury Lawyers in Stockton
I’m Ed Smith, a Stockton Personal Injury Lawyer. ATVs are great for both entertainment and exercise, however, when it comes to children, it is vital to ensure that they have the proper safety equipment while riding. If you or a family member has been injured in an ATV accident, call me at (209) 227-1931 or (800) 404-5400 for friendly, free advice.
I am honored to be a part of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.
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Photo by Koen van Ginkel on Unsplash
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