An important lesson for all outdoor trail riding — whether horseback riding, biking, motorcycling, quad-riding, snowmobiling, or similar activities — is to always stay aware and alert of any potential obstacles in your path, and carefully scout out your chosen trail beforehand when possible.
This was a lesson that Jacksonville, Arkansas, resident Sarah Hoover did not heed while riding a four-wheeler, and as a result she had a nasty encounter with an equally nasty opponent: Barbed wire.
She posted pictures of her injuries to her social media account with the following warning:
“To anyone who rides fourwheelers, no matter how much you think you know the trail, please be careful! I drove through barbed wire. I’ve never felt so lucky to be alive.”
You can see photos of her wounds here (warning: images of bloody injuries; these may be upsetting to some viewers).
Judging from the looks of those injuries, she is indeed very lucky to be alive.
It also sounds like she has learned a very valuable lesson from her experience, which is to pay attention to and scrupulously follow the safety tips recommended for all ATV riders.
AndrewT at MotoSports.com provided a succinct rundown of these safety tips. The advice most relevant to Hoover’s experience is number nine:
“9. Be Aware. Know your surroundings. … Look ahead just like driving a car so you can see what’s coming. Bumps are fun but when you hit one unexpectedly you can get bounced right off your ride. Look out for critters jumping out in front of your riding path and be cognizant of other riding parties.”
This advice is important to heed even when riding an ATV down a residential street or county road.
For example, a 9-year-old girl in Salt Lake City, Utah, was killed in 2015 after the ATV she was riding on with her mother and sister ran into a barbed wire fence at the end of a residential street.
Also in 2015, a 12-year-old Texas boy driving an ATV was killed after running into barbed wire that had been stretched across a county road.
Sarah Hoover is very fortunate that her story did not end in similar tragedy.
We hope her future ATV rides are safer and much more uneventful.
Share this story on Facebook and Twitter to show others what can happen if you ignore safety tips while riding an ATV.
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