BACKGROUND: All-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are unstable on steep and rough terrain, and thus, rollover is the most common accident which can result in a high rate of fatal outcomes, with higher rates for young and male drivers. OBJECTIVE: This paper investigates the ability of rural Pennsylvania ATV drivers to correctly evaluate slopes, and the mean slope angle at which the most and least conservative drivers indicate a beginning of concern of a roll-over. METHOD: The study was conducted using a simulator, a commercial ATV firmly fixed on an hydraulically-lifted platform. As the platform was being raised, participants were asked to report when they became uncomfortable and then when they would not drive across a slope at such an angle. The difference between the reported and the actual angles in both conditions were analyzed. RESULTS: Fifty-five individuals, mostly male and younger than 20 years, participated in riding on the simulator. Between 1/3 and 1/4 of the participants correctly estimated the angle while approximately 2/3 of participants overestimated the angles at which they felt they would be uncomfortable and they would not drive across. Participants began to feel uncomfortable at 15.9 ± 5.7 degrees and became so uncomfortable that they felt they would not drive at 22.7 ± 3.7 degrees. CONCLUSIONS: Overestimation of lateral roll angles is the most common result. This is in favor of safety when drivers are informed about a slope limit ATVs should not be operated on.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health