As the weather warms up, more people are heading outdoors to enjoy the sunshine and sunny skies. Among various outdoor things people enjoy outdoors during the warmer months, riding utility terrain vehicles (UTVs) or dirt bikes is a common activity. UTVs, however, may not be as safe as they seem—and can pose significant dangers to drivers and passengers alike if they are used improperly.
According to a recent news report, a man driving a UTV was killed when a dump truck backed into him. Local troopers reported that the dump truck was traveling up a hill when it was no longer able to continue uphill and backed into the UTV that was driving behind it. The dump truck pushed the UTV off the left side of the road, where it overturned and the dump truck came to a rest on top of it. The driver of the UTV was pronounced dead on the scene, but the driver of the dump truck was not injured in the crash. The accident remains under investigation by local authorities.
What Are the Risks of Driving a UTV?
Although UTVs include seat belts and a roll cage, they can still pose significant risks to those who drive them and their passengers. Most accidents involve drinking and driving, inexperienced operators, and not driving UTVs as they were intended by failing to use safety equipment or speeding. Outside of driver error, however, UTVs carry many other risks. They often do not have the metal protective exterior of a full car and can be more difficult for some drivers to see on the road. Without a helmet, multi-point harness, or proper eye protection, drivers are often vulnerable to significant injuries if an accident takes place. In addition, UTVs carry a higher risk for rollover than other similar vehicles because its weight and center of gravity do not allow it to shift to balance on corners. Even with a better suspension than similar types of vehicles, UTVs are often at risk of rolling over if the driver turns a corner too quickly or is not careful on bumpy terrain.
UTVs also often give drivers a false sense of safety because they appear and feel similar to passenger vehicles. Because the driver sits inside the UTV and the vehicle has doors and seatbelts, it can often give drivers the false impression that it operates and provides the same level of safety as a car. UTVs, however, do not have various safety features that full vehicles do, such as anti-lock brakes or stability controls. In addition, without the protective shell of a car, they can expose drivers and their passengers to other external risks.
Do You Need a Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you or someone you know was recently injured or killed by a truck in Maryland, contact the lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen today for assistance. Our lawyers fight for the injured and will provide you with the legal expertise, support, and the peace of mind you need to proceed with your legal claim with ease. To schedule a free initial consultation with a member of our team today, contact us at 800-654-1949.