There are a number of reasons why many ATV riders fail to make safety their No. 1 priority, here, Ohio State University Extension, points out some of the common rider mistakes:

The perception that ATVs are not dangerous. ATVs are often thought of as toys. Or, at the very least, thought of as being no more dangerous than, say, a riding lawnmower.

The misconception that the long seat is designed for more than one rider. ATVs should only have one person on them. The long seat is designed that way so riders can shift their weight when going up or down hilly terrain.

The idea that ATVs are safe to ride on pavement. ATVs should never be ridden on pavement. The design of the ATV is such that it doesn’t turn like you normally expect, or in some cases not at all, on paved surfaces.

The idea that ATVs are “one size fits all.” According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, 30% of all injuries and deaths occur in youth under 16, and riding the wrong ATV is a contributing factor. A small rider on a full-size ATV, even if all other precautions are taken, can be just as dangerous as not following safety guidelines. Would you allow someone to drive a car if he or she can’t reach the pedals?

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