It has been nearly eight years since we lost 11-year-old Logan Almer to an ATV accident.
The road to here has been long. Along the way, I have uncovered shocking statistics and an industry that fears discussing the frequency and the severity of ATV-related injuries and fatalities—particularly those involving children.
The lack of education on the risks ATVs pose is astonishing and the excuses for it are thin— particularly when you consider the amount of money spent to promote the thrill and utility you'll enjoy while riding.
Manufacturers spend weighty ad budgets to broadcast eloquently woven words like fun, ultimate, adventure, freedom, confidence, reliability, smoother, versatile, better, comfortable, stability, and control. Oh, how exciting! Especially when knitted together with words like "affordable pricing".
Well, I will tell you, that's not what comes to mind when I think of Logan's fatal accident. It was not fun, it wasn't the ultimate, and it surely wasn't affordable. On the contrary, I think of words like horror, gruesome, tragic, devastating, priceless, and dead. I also think of forever.
I began this website tonight out of necessity; having compiled a significant amount of data, resources, and connections, I need a place to pull it all together. I hope that it becomes a resource for those wanting to learn about the scope of the problem, and explore solutions.
As if to underscore the urgent necessity of such a website, just five minutes into the project, I ran across another blatant, absurd example of America's failure to save our children from ATV injuries. Ironically, I discovered it on the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's ( CPSC) website, the very agency providing oversight for ATV safety.
For clarity "the CPSC is an independent federal regulatory agency that was created in 1972 by Congress in the Consumer Product Safety Act. In that law, Congress directed the Commission to "protect the public against unreasonable risks of injuries and deaths associated with consumer products."
While looking for their latest report on ATV injuries and fatalities I tripped upon this section designated to ATV Safety where I discovered links to safety videos and training courses.
Look what I found:
I hoped you clicked the bulleted links; if you did you would realize that even the leading government agency devoted to addressing the issue of ATV safety is woefully incompetent — as both links are dead. How fitting.
It's yet another illustration of how pathetic our national response has been on the issue of child ATV safety, and it has me wondering, who is actually in charge?