Each year, hundreds of ATV riders -- young and old -- die or experience life altering injuries from incidents involving ATVs. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends that all ATV riders follow the safety guidelines below every time they ride.

An estimated 903 people died in 2006* in incidents associated with ATVs. In addition, in 2009* there were an estimated 131,900 emergency department-treated injuries associated with ATVs. Children younger than 16 years of age represent 17 percent of reported fatalities in 2006. A quarter of the estimated injuries in 2009 were children younger than 16 years of age. CPSC also reported that ridership has continued to grow, with 10.5 million 4-wheeled ATVs in use in 2009.* (*These years are the latest years for which the relevant data are available.)

The 2008 Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) banned three-wheel ATVs. Major ATV manufacturers agreed in Consent Decrees in 1988 to limit the engine size and provide speed limiting devices for ATVs intended for children under 16 and to offer driver-training programs.


Children and young people under the age of 16 should not ride adult ATVs.


All ATV users should take a hands-on safety training course.


Always wear a helmet and safety gear such as boots and gloves while on an ATV.


Never drive an ATV on paved roads. Never drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Never drive a youth or single-rider adult ATV with a passenger, and never ride these vehicles as a passenger. There are some ATVs that are designed for two riders. Passengers on tandem ATVs should be at least 12 years old.