If new legislation is passed in the state of New York, the minimum age a person is allowed to operate an ATV will be raised.

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Key sponsor of the bill Peter Harckham hopes for the legislation to be approved and if it is, it would raise the age requirement to operate an ATV from 10 years old to 14 years old. Additionally, the legislation looks to also change the supervision requirement from 16 years old to 18 years old.

In New York, a person under the age of ten is only allowed to use an ATV under the supervision of an adult or on land that has been leased by the minor’s parent or guardian. Under the law, the definition of being supervised is by a person who is at least 18 years old or a person between the ages of 16 and 17 who have completed an ATV safety course and been given a completion certificate from an approved safety provider.

In New York, a person between the ages of 10 and 15 is only allowed to operate an ATV under the supervision of an adult or unsupervised as long as the use is restricted to land owned or leased by the minor’s parent or guardian. A person between the ages of 10 and 15 is allowed to operate an ATV on land where use is permitted without being under the supervision of an adult as long as they have completed an ATV safety training course and who has obtained a course completion certificate.

Pediatric surgeon Dr. Rony Marwan says that every hour, four kids go to the emergency room to be seen for injuries they sustained in an ATV accident. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, more than 3,000 children were killed in ATV accidents between 1982 and 2015.

The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles is clear when it states that an ATV may not be operated "anywhere in New York State, except on your own property, unless it is covered by liability insurance." The minimum required insurance coverage is "$50,000/$100,000 for death, $25,000/$50,000 for injury, and $10,000 for property damage in any one accident."

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