Utility task vehicles (UTV) often draw comparisons to all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), but there is one major difference. UTV’s usually seat multiple people, while an ATV will likely only have one driver and possibly a passenger behind them.
At times, the potential dangers of UTV’s can be underestimated. These vehicles are as dangerous as they are fun. Sometimes, children and teenagers drive them around before they have a license, possibly with multiple other underage friends. Others drive rambunctiously on these off-road vehicles, possibly while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The risk of a rollover crash on a UTV is one that the driver should not ignore. Research has shown that wearing a helmet can increase the chances of survival and diminish the severity of an injury in the event of a UTV rollover crash. Passengers will also benefit from safety gear.
Helmets are not just for on-road vehicles
People tend to associate the compulsory wearing of helmets with motorcycles and bicycles while on public roads. There is no Texas law that mandates that people on UTV’s wear a helmet, so many people simply choose not to.
However, wearing the right helmet or making your teenager put one on could potentially save a life. It can also help establish that the person using the UTV did their best to be safe and therefore doesn’t have primary responsibility for their injuries. Poor safety practices when operating a UTV may open someone up to claims of contributory negligence from the company that designed a vehicle that rolls over far too easily.
Using proper safety equipment can strengthen a claim about defective product design for those who get hurt in a UTV rollover incident.