An ATV accident occurred in Pasco County on August 18, resulting in critical injuries to a nine-year-old boy. The incident took place on SR 52, where the boy was driving a side-by-side ATV with his father as a passenger. While attempting to cross the road, the ATV collided with a Toyota Camry traveling in the same direction. The collision caused the ATV to overturn. The nine-year-old suffered critical injuries, and his father sustained minor injuries.
Although ATVs are considered a recreational vehicle, they can be incredibly dangerous. Here’s what you should know about Florida’s ATV laws, and how they might affect a personal injury claim.
Florida ATV laws
In Florida, there are specific state laws and regulations governing the operation of ATVs:
- ATV operation on public roads: It is generally prohibited to operate ATVs on public roads or streets in Florida. However, there is an exception for unpaved roads during the daytime if the road's speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less, or if specific counties are exempt. ATVs cannot be operated on paved roads.
- Operator requirements: Only licensed drivers or minors under the direct supervision of a licensed driver are allowed to operate ATVs in Florida.
- Protective gear for minors: Any person under the age of 16 who operates, rides, or is otherwise propelled on an ATV must wear both eye protection and a safety helmet.
- Penalties for violations: Violating these ATV laws is considered a noncriminal traffic infraction, which means individuals who fail to adhere to these regulations may face fines or other penalties.
- Negligent entrustment: Negligent ATV entrustment refers to providing an ATV, to another person when the provider knows or has reason to believe that the person's lack of experience or youth could lead to unsafe operation and potential harm to themselves or others. In Florida, victims can hold the provider liable for negligent acts resulting from the operator's use of the ATV.
If you’ve been injured in an ATV crash, contact a knowledgeable Sarasota, FL accident attorney at Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, Murphy & Walsh today.