All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) were first developed and marketed in the U.S. in the 1970s. They have soared in popularity for occupational and recreational uses since that time. In 2008, there were approximately 10.2 million all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) in use in the United States. In 2001, it was estimated that 23 million Americans rode ATVs; 69% were adults and 31% children (CPSC, 2003). Deaths and injuries from ATVs have increased over time. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Kentucky led the nation for ATV deaths from 2002-2006, with increasing numbers of fatalities annually.
ATV use on farms is increasing across the country because the vehicles provide an efficient and reliable replacement for horses and tractors for farm work, such as checking livestock, feeding, or fence repair. Aging farmers and farmers with physical disabilities can often increase their productivity by using ATVs for their transportation needs on the farm. ATVs also serve as an inexpensive and popular recreational vehicle used by families especially in rural areas.
In 2001, there were an estimated 481 ATVs per 1,000 (CI95% ± 27) farms in the southern region of the U.S. A literature review and a descriptive cross-sectional study were conducted. The specific aims of this dissertation were to:
1. Critically analyze the state of the science on ATV-related injury risk factors and explore recreational and occupational use of ATVs on farms.
2. Describe individual characteristics and demographic factors that are associated with ATV ownership and ridership among adult farmers.
3. Describe individual characteristics and environmental factors that are associated with ATV injury on farms.
4. Test models for predicting ATV ownership, ATV ridership, and ATV injury risk factors among adult farmers.