Thursday, August 06, 2020

Study: Surge in child ATV injuries likely linked to pandemic

An increase in all-terrain-vehicle injuries among children is likely linked to more of them being out of school during the pandemic, according to a study by the Injury Free Coalition for Kids.

Dr. Charles Jennissen, a pediatric emergency physician and University of Iowa professor who led the study, compared ATV injuries during the pandemic to a year ago. “Clearly, we are seeing more injuries, including of ATVs,” Jennissen told the National Children's Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety. "Overall injuries are probably four to five times higher because many don’t go to the ER, he added. In the US, about 40,000 children under the age of 16 are treated in emergency departments for ATV-related injuries each year, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics."

For information about child ATV accidents in your area, check, a project launched by the NCCRAHS and the Marshfield Clinic Research Institute. The open-access online database catalogs agricultural injury reports, including ATV accidents, from news stories and other sources.

Part of the problem, Jennissen said, is that younger children are allowed to drive ATVs, even though the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that only people ages 16 and older operate them. “More kids in the U.S. under 16 die from ATVs than bicycle crashes," Jennissen told NCCRAHS. "We talk a lot about bicycle safety for kids, but this is a bigger killer, and we need to protect our children."

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