A jury awarded $3.6 million last month to the parents of a 13-year-old girl killed in an ATV crash. The jurors found the family that owned the vehicle to be at fault.
The parents of the teenager, who live west of Boca Raton, Florida, filed a lawsuit after their daughter was killed riding an ATV that should only have been operated by someone at least 16 years old.
The jury found that the owners, along with their now 17-year-old son, were at fault in the 2003 crash in a gated community west of Delray Beach. The jury assigned most of the liability to the owners, along with 15% to a third party and 5% to the deceased child.
During the trial, the owners testified they were aware of the warning stickers on the ATV and had gone over the owner’s manual with their son. The manual said riders had to be at least 16. The child was allowed to take a joy ride on the ATV and it was alleged she had no idea what she was doing.
The little girl, who was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, lost control of the vehicle as it veered off a grass shoulder and hit a tree. The impact threw her and a passenger off the vehicle. This was a tragic result that should never have happened.