Q & A about ATV Helmets

KVF300CCF_77125Have questions about riding ATVs with helmets? Keep reading to find out the answer to a few common questions…

Q: How fast might you be moving when riding an ATV? How does speed influence the impact of being thrown from a vehicle?

A: Depending on the size of an ATV, it can travel at road speeds (40 to 80 miles per hour). Most of the time ATVs travel at much slower speeds because they are moving up or down hills, over bumps, and around curves. Due to momentum, the faster a vehicle is moving the further an obstacle or person is thrown from the vehicle. The force of hitting a stationary object (road surface, tree, another vehicle, etc.) is directly proportional to speed.

Q: What other personal protective equipment (PPE) is needed when operating an ATV?

A: Although a helmet is the most important PPE, ATV operators should also wear long sleeved shirts, long pants, over-the-ankle boots, gloves, and goggles. Each PPE protects a different part of the body, with the brain being the most fragile.

Q: Are all helmets made the same?

A: There are different types of helmets for different forms of transportation. Examples include: equestrian, bicycle, and motorcycle helmets. Each one has its own requirements based on speed and size of the transportation mode.

Q: What’s the purpose of the face shield on an ATV helmet?

A: Like the brain, your face contains very important items such as eyes, nose, and mouth. If thrown from an ATV, your head and face are often the first items to impact. The face guard provides additional protection to these crucial areas of the head.

Q: How do you determine the right sized ATV helmet?

A: ATV helmets should fit snugly and be stable when you shake your head from side-to-side or front-to-back. Try on several at the store. There is much padding within the helmet for protection purposes and there should be some resistance when pulling it over your head. Bigger is not necessarily better. A loose fitting helmet can be dangerous, fly off the head, and be noisy due to increased wind resistance.

Have any other questions for us? Let us know in a comment below!

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Tractor Safety! #FSHW15

Tractor Safety is an important topic. Day 5 of Farm Safety and Health week is focused on tractors and educating the public of the dangers and risks. Download the PDF below and to help start a conversation between you and your kids. Follow the chatter and see what you missed by following #FSHW15 on social media.

Tractor - Coloring Page.pdf

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Confined Spaces in Agriculture – #FSHW15

Day 4 of Farm Safety & Heath Week is upon us! Today’s focus is on confined spaces, such as grain bins, an important topic considering fall harvest is just around the corner. Download the PDF below to teach your kids about the dangers of confined spaces. Follow the conversations this week by following #FSHW15 on social media.

Grain - Secret Code.pdf

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Keep kids safe on the farm! #FSHW15

IMG_0696Each year, hundreds of these children die and thousands are injured on the farm where they live, work and play.

Children are vulnerable to many of the same hazards as adults who live or work on farms, but they are less capable of understanding those hazards. Although parents cannot completely child-proof a farm or ranch, they need to make it as safe as possible.

Farm-related childhood injuries and deaths may seem unpredictable and random, but there are definite factors that should play a part in prevention efforts.

Parents can take these precautions to prevent children from getting hurt on the farm or ranch:

  • Find out the developmental characteristics of children at specific ages
  • Identify the dangerous areas on your farm or ranch and determine where kids are most likely to get hurt
  • Determine what draws kids to dangerous situations
  • Set up appropriate rules for children to follow and be consistent in enforcement of the rules
  • Train youth in proper and safe operation of farm tasks before assigning chores
  • Provide necessary personal protective equipment for the job
  • Supervise children based on age and maturity level Children must prove they are capable of follow
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Don’t forget about your health! #FSHW15

It’s easy to take your lungs for granted.

The lungs take a gas that your body needs to get rid of (carbon dioxide) and exchanges it for a gas that your body needs (oxygen). Within the rural environment, there are many things that can interfere with the lungs operating properly. Grain dust, molds, pollen, animal dander, soil, fumes, and exhaust can be found in abundance on the farm. All of these can lead to serious long-term respiratory problems if not prevented or restricted from entering the lungs.

One of the best ways to prevent lung damage from farm-related dangers is to wear a mask. Masks are available for various things and use a filter or cartridge to mechanically remove particles. It is important to select the appropriate mask for the job. Check the mask packaging to determine which mask is suggested for each job. Wearing the proper mask correctly is vital to help protect lungs from damaging elements.

Consider the following when choosing an appropriate respiratory mask:

  • Choose a tested respirator (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health approved masks will be marked)
  • Use the correct type of mask for the job
  • Use a mask with a rating of 95 or above
  • Make sure the size and fit are appropriate, which can be difficult for children
  • Consider eye glasses and facial hair when determining proper fit

Just don’t allow a mask to give you a false sense of security. Certain farm environments like manure pits, silos, and sludge tanks could be fatal even while wearing masks.

When determining if and when youth should be wearing respiratory masks on the farm first consider:

  • Are they old enough and have the ability to do the job?
  • Do you have a mask that will fit them correctly?
  • Are they responsible enough to wear the mask throughout the duration of the job?
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Rural Roadway Safety! #FSHW

Farm Safety & Health Week is finally here! Hooray! Today’s focus is on rural roadway safety, an important topic considering fall harvest is just around the corner. Download the PDF below to teach your kids about the dangers of rural roads. Follow the conversations this week by following #FSHW15 on social media.

Rural Roads - Word Find.pdf

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No Extra Riders on ATVs

IMG_0235Most ATVs are built for one operator. ATV seats are large, but that’s to allow the driver room to move when turning corners or maneuvering terrain. It’s not designed for additional people to ride. An additional person’s weight alters the ATV’s center of gravity. The center of gravity is the point where the machine is most stable. The lower and more centered the center of gravity the more stable the machine and less likely to tip over. When a person rides on the machine with the operator the center of gravity moves in the direction of the extra weight. This means the vehicle is more likely to tip over. This can also be true if you are hauling heavy items. Chemicals, hay, or feed being hauled alter the center of gravity similar to the weight of an extra rider.

When another person is riding on an ATV they distract the operator away from his/her main responsibility – driving safely. Operating an ATV  takes lots of body movement. When there’s another person in close proximity, it’s more difficult for the operator to move appropriately.

Some ATVs are built for additional riders. If this is the case, the user’s manual will say so. The manufacturer took the extra weight into consideration when designing the ATV.

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