(SILVER LAKE) - Three youth suffered numerous injuries when an ATV rolled over late Saturday afternoon in Wabash County.
Officials with the Department of Natural Resources say Blake Tipton, 15, Silver Lake, was operating a 2005 Polaris Ranger 500 ATV in the area of 7991W 1400N when the ATV left the roadway and rolled over, injuring all three occupants. Taylor Biltz, 10, Rochester, and her brother Dyson Biltz, 15, were the other injured parties in this accident.
According to investigating officer Cpl. Ashlee Jackson of the IDNR Law Enforcement Division, Blake Tipton was operating the ATV westbound on CR1400N from CR750W when he attempted to exit the roadway on what he thought was a field access road. However, he struck the ditch at approximately 35 mph causing the ATV to rollover and slide well into a freshly cut soybean field.
The ATV is considered totaled as a result of the extensive damage it sustained from the accident. Blake Tipton suffered minor abrasions and did not require medical treatment. Taylor Biltz was airlifted by Samaritan Helicopter to Ft. Wayne with unknown internal injuries. Dyson Biltz was transported to Woodlawn Hospital in Rochester for evaluation. The extent of his injuries were unknown.
The investigation revealed that the ATV was equipped with seatbelts however they were not used. None of the victims were wearing a helmet or protective gear. Operating ATV's on the roadway in Wabash County is unlawful except if being utilized in the active pursuit of farming practices.
The vast majority of ATV's are not meant to be operated by persons under the age of 16. Indiana Conservation Officers want to remind ATV owners to supply helmets to all occupants of an ATV as well as other safety gear that may be needed.
An online ATV safety course should be supplemented by supervised operating instruction for beginners before they are allowed to operate any ATV.
Other agencies assisting at the scene were Samaritan Air Ambulance, Henry Township Fire, Fulton County EMS, and Akron PD.
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