Utility Terrain Vehicles (UTVs) are small four-wheel-drive vehicles that are often used off of roadways on farms and ranches. They’re sometimes confused with other off-road vehicles like all-terrain vehicles (ATVs). The two types of vehicles might have some similar characteristics, but a UTV is an entirely different vehicle than an ATV. A UTV might fit between two and six people, and it might even have rollover and cage protection. Nearly all of them have cargo areas at the rear. Many UTVs can carry up to 1,000 pounds of passengers and equipment while most ATVs can only carry a driver, a passenger and 200 pounds of cargo. UTVs might be used recreationally like ATVs, but the primary purpose of a UTV is for work.
Common Causes of UTV Crashes
Because UTVs are built for off-road purposes, they’re built to be tough. The durability of a UTV can’t compensate for negligent driving, adverse weather conditions or difficult terrain though. Here are some common causes of accidents and injuries on UTVs:
- Inexperienced drivers.
- Turning sharply at excessive speeds
- Tipping backward on steep terrain.
- Failure to wear seat restraints.
- Operating a UTV while under the influence of alcohol, drugs or a combination of the two.
Post Falls UTV Crash
Earlier this week, a juvenile girl who was a passenger in the rear bed of a UTV was severely injured when its 19-year-old driver lost control of the vehicle and rolled it over on an off-road curve near Post Falls, Idaho. The girl was pinned under the UTV, and an adult passenger was ejected from it. Both victims were transported to a local hospital by paramedics. The UTV driver was placed under arrest for aggravated DUI.
Common UTV Accident Injuries
Regardless of the fact that UTVs are primarily used for work purposes and not recreation, serious injuries can result in the event of an accident. Here are some common injuries that are often suffered in UTV accidents:
- Traumatic Brain Injuries: These can range from a concussion to a foreign object penetrating a victim’s skull and brain. Severe traumatic brain injuries are far less likely to occur in an UTV accident if riders wear helmets. They should be worn by riders at all times.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: A rollover accident can affect the spine in ways that can impact the spinal cord. Paralysis can result.
- Fractures: Broken bones can happen in any number of ways, especially when getting pounded around on rough terrain.
- Internal Organ Damage: A rollover, ejection or even being run over by a UTV can cause serious damage to vital organs.
- Wrongful Death: The carelessness and negligence of a UTV driver, property owner or even a dangerous defect in a UTV from a manufacturer can be cause for a wrongful death claim.
Contact a UTV Lawyer
A serious UTV crash can leave a victim permanently injured, emotionally distraught and financially devastated. If you were injured in a UTV accident, or if you lost a family member in one in or around Post Falls, Idaho, you might be eligible to seek compensation for your injuries and damages. Start pursuing that compensation by contacting our offices. You’ll be able to arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation with a talented and effective Idaho UTV accident lawyer who will listen to you carefully. After that, you’ll be advised on the legal issues surrounding your accident and how we propose to address them.