06/09/07   |   By

New Child-Size ATV Is Deadly: CPSC Issues Warning | DC Metro Area Personal Injury Law Blog

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The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a unique warning that the Kazuma Meerkat 50 youth model of ATV is unsafe for use.

The warning is unique in that it carries no legal weight, as the understaffed agency lacks the number of commissioners necessary to compel Kazuma to comply with an investigation.

According to CPSC, however, owners should stop using the ATV immediately, and demand a refund from the importer or dealer from whom it was purchased. The model’s lack of front brakes and parking brake, as well as its missing neutral indicator light, and ability to be started while in gear, make it a particularly unsafe vehicle. Additionally, the owner’s manual lacks important information regarding its safe operation. Because this model is designed for users between 6 and 11 years of age – riders whose handling skills are under-developed – the defects are considered especially dangerous.

Even “safe” ATVs can be dangerous if not used appropriately. If your summer vacation plans include ATV use, do yourself a favor and consider these ATV recommendations from the National Safety Council:

  • “An ATV is not a toy. Children should not be permitted to operate ATVs without specialized training and then they should be allowed to only operate an ATV of an appropriate size. Contact the ATV Safety Institute to enroll in a course.
  • ATVs with an engine size of 70cc to 90cc should be operated by people at least 12 years of age.
  • ATVs with an engine size of greater than 90cc should only be operated by people at least 16 years of age.
  • Wear appropriate riding gear: DOT-, Snell ANSI-approved helmet, goggles, gloves, over-the-ankle boots, long-sleeve shirt and long pants.
  • Read owners manuals carefully.
  • ATVs are not made for multiple riders. Never carry anyone else on the ATV.
  • Any added attachments affect the stability, operating and braking of the ATV.
  • Just because an attachment is available doesn’t mean that it can be used without increasing your risk of being injured.
  • Do not operate the ATV on streets, highways or paved roads.”

If you or a family member has suffered injuries in connection with a Kazuma Meerkat 50 youth ATV accident, please contact us on-line at Regan Zambri & Long or call us at (202) 463-3030 for a free consultation.  If you would like to receive our electronic newsletter, please click here.

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