Fatalities and personal injuries from the use of ATVs and snowmobiles in Northern Norway in 2013-14
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionTidsskrift for Den norske legeforening. 2019, 139 (7), 608-612. https://doi.org/10.4045/tidsskr.18.0966
BACKGROUND: Previous studies have shown a high occurrence of injuries and deaths related to the use of snowmobiles and other off-road vehicles in Northern Norway. No public statistics are available to permit monitoring of these findings over time. The objective of our study was to provide new figures for the prevalence of injuries and deaths from the use of snowmobiles and other off-road vehicles, and assess the consistency between different sources of data. MATERIAL AND METHOD: Information on registered deaths and personal injuries requiring hospitalisation in Northern Norway in the period 1 January 2013–31 December 2014 was collected from the police and hospitals. We also searched through open online sources. RESULTS: We found 7 deaths and 87 personal injuries requiring hospitalisation: 13 incidents with ATVs and 81 involving snowmobiles. Median age was 31.5 years, and 41 (44 %) victims were below 30 years of age. All the fatalities and 66 (76 %) of those injured were men. Altogether 42 (45 %) of the incidents had occurred in Finnmark county. Of the seven fatalities, the police found six in their records and the hospitals found two. In searching through open online sources we found one further ATV-related and three snowmobile-related fatalities in the same region and period. INTERPRETATION: No reliable records of fatalities and personal injuries resulting from the use of snowmobiles and ATVs are available. The findings of this study may serve as a reference point for preventive efforts by the police and health services and for purposes of further study.