Growing Concern for the Use of All Terrain Vehicles in California
The growing popularity of recreational vehicles such as All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs ) and other Off Road Vehicles (ORV ) has become a major concern for environmentalists and activists in California since it has become evident that the use of ATVs has resulted in the damage of natural and protected areas in the state as well as providing imminent danger to children and the general public . Although ATVs are facing increasing regulatory pressures , debate still boils down to the discussion as to how [banner_entry_middle]
much regulation should be imposed on ATVs and ORVs when it comes to limiting access of ORVs to California public lands
The use of ATVs and ORVs are supported by laws , specifically the Federal Lands Policy and Management Act (FLPMA ) which established the rules and procedures under which the Bureau of Land Management (BLM ) could grant such right-of-ways intended to supplant RS 2477 . The FLPMA was seen by many as a means to claim rights-of-way across national parks , forests wilderness and other public lands . Basically , ORVs use closed trails in forests and national parks . But environmentalists and activist groups however are pushing for more rules which govern the use of ORVs because these vehicles splinter the landscape into a disorganized and destructive web of trails and roads . They point to severe impacts of the soil , spread the invasive plant seeds and disrupt sensitive and endangered wildlife (newrules .org . Moreover , the number of ATV-related deaths has reached to an alarming scale because most of the victims of these incidents are children under the age of sixteen . According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission ‘s latest estimates , from December 30 1987 to the end of 1991 , there were more than 1033 deaths and 224 ,500 injuries from all ATVs . Almost 40 of the victims have been , and will continue to be , children under 16 . During this period approximately 415 children died and 90 ,000 were injured riding ATVs . The CPSC currently estimates that there will be 239 deaths and 48 ,100 injuries from ATVs in 1992 alone (Alexander .Hence , there is a growing need for stricter regulation of the use of ATVs not just for environmental concerns but for the safety of children as well
Among the earlier regulations imposed on ATVs is the Consent Decree pushed by interest and activist groups which although does not specifically prohibit the sale of the vehicle for children ‘s use required manufacturers to include certain age recommendations ‘ in their ATV advertising : ATV engine sizes greater than 70 cc should be used only by children 12 and older , and ATVs with engine sizes greater than 90 cc should be used only those over 16 (Alexander . Furthermore the Consent Decree requires that ATVs should be labeled to warn purchasers that children under the age of 16 should not ride adult-sized ATVs and that manufacturers have to use their best efforts to ensure that dealers will follow and abide by the recommendations by the Decree
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