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Dr. Charles Jennissen, with the University of Iowa's Department of Emergency Medicine presented this at CPSC's ATV Safety Summit Oct. 12, 2012.
The Safety Information and Guidance Provided to Parents by All-Terrain Vehicle Dealers and Sales Representatives' Objective: To determine the practice of ATV dealers and salespersons with respect to providing safety information since enactment of the 2009 U.S. Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. Methods: A "secret buyer" method was utilized to evaluate seller practices. Results: 50 dealerships from 4 states were studied. 35 subjects (70%) were willing to show and discuss selling an adult-sized ATV when told that the purchase was for a 12 year old. Seven (14%) responded that ATVs should not have extra riders when the investigator made statements about the adequacy of a seat being long enough for a child to give a sibling rides. Only one subject, when prompted, informed the investigator about the need for a 12 year old to complete ATV safety training to drive in a public ATV park. Conclusions: Most ATV sellers in this study failed to follow requirements regarding age recommendations or to provide other safety information. Those who did often voiced concerns about possible negative repercussions from violations. Dealership compliance would likely benefit from increased enforcement, training, and resources. However, a "don't ask, don't tell" relationship between seller and buyer was alluded to during the study. This practice would predictably limit the impact of regulation enforcement.