Oklahoma Camp Gives Lessons In ATV Safety

Monday, June 7th 2010, 6:06 pm
By: News On 6

By Craig Day, The News On 6

TULSA, OK – It's been a deadly couple of weeks for Oklahoma ATV users. A grandmother and her four-year-old grandson died after an ATV accident this weekend just north of Grove in Delaware County.

6/6/2010 Related Story: Grandmother, 4-Year-Old Killed In Delaware County ATV Accident

In just the past two weeks, ATV accidents have killed five people in our state.

At the Oklahoma Farm Bureau safety camp in Chandler, 30 kids from all over Oklahoma are learning about agriculture, leadership, and farm and ranch safety.

One of the lessons is about ATV safety, a lesson that is intended to save young lives.

Dusty Applegate is an Oklahoma Farm Bureau safety specialist. He says ATV accidents are a very real danger to kids like these and also adults across Oklahoma.

"These kids, on these four wheelers like that. It won't happen to me. It won't happen to me," said Dusty Applegate, OK Farm Bureau. "And that's what we're trying to bring to light is yes it can. And it happens how fast?"

Last year the Oklahoma Highway Patrol says there were 102 ATV crashes, three of them fatal. In just the past two weeks alone in Oklahoma, five people have been killed, including three kids.

Just over the weekend in Grove, a grandmother and her four-year-old grandson rolled their ATV on a county road and landed on the steps of a house.

June 1st, a 13-year-old Edmond boy died in Pittsburg County after losing control of his ATV.

6/1/2010 Related Story: Two Teens Die In Separate Accidents In Cherokee County And Pittsburg County

And May 31st, a Stratford teenager died in Lexington in Cleveland County after hitting a tree.

"It does not care how old you are, how young you are, how good looking you are, how pretty you are," Applegate said. "It doesn't care, the machine doesn't care. It will kill you deader than a hammer and it doesn't care."

It's something instructors at this camp don't want to see. They're hopeful these kids will learn the rules and regulations, safe ways to operate ATV's and the dangerous results if they don't.

It's always recommended that anyone who gets on an ATV to go through a safety course first. For more information, check out ATVsafety.org, or call the ATV safety hotline at 800-852-5344.

For ATV rider courses in your area, call 800-887-2887.