Snowmobiles are becoming more popular in North America and Europe for both recreational and work- related activities. As use has increased, accidents resulting in injuries and death have as well. The most common cause for snowmobile fatalities is head and neck injury, followed by drowning. For non fatal injuries, soft tissue, nerve, and skeletal trauma are the leading damages.
Statistically, males have been killed or injured at a rate that is three times that of females. In addition, the link between injuries and alcohol is very strong. Fatality due to a head injury is often due to the operator colliding into a fixed object such a tree. Other victims are killed by falling off the vehicle or being run over. Persons who fall through ice are subject to hypothermia, frostbite, and drowning. Children are often injured when being towed by a snowmobile or being struck by one.
Studies providing recommendations for prevention strategies of snowmobile accidents are lacking. However, the committee on injury and poison prevention of the American Academy of Pediatrics has listed some advice:
In addition, snowmobile riders are to be properly clothed, wearing protective clothing, rubber boots, goggles, and a helmet. The snowmobile should have a first aid kit complete with flares and a cell phone.