3 teens hospitalized after ATV crash in central Harris County

HOUSTON – Three juveniles were taken to an area hospital Sunday after an ATV crash in central Harris County, according to authorities.

Officials said the juveniles were thrown from the 4-wheeler after crashing into a mailbox in the 3900 block of Cedar Hill Lane around 8 p.m.

According to authorities, a 13-year-old girl was driving the ATV on a road it should not have been on, with two 14-year-old boys riding on the back.

At some point during the ride, the 13-year-old lost control of the 4-wheeler while heading west on Cedar Hill and crashed into the mailbox.

“They were traveling at a high rate of speed down Cedar Hill,” said Dashana Dheek-McNeal, with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. “The driver lost control (and) struck a mailbox. After striking the mailbox, the ATV flipped a couple times. All of the occupants were ejected off.”

Officials said all three had to be transported to a hospital, with one of the boys suffering serious head trauma.

“We’re just really trying to find out the extent of the injuries on the passenger,” said Dheek-McNeal. “We’re just trying to find out if they’re going to make it OK because there were some pretty serious head injuries.”

Authorities said none of the teens were wearing helmets, which is why that one of the 14-year-old riders suffered serious head trauma,  deputies said.

The other two teens suffered cuts and bruises, officials said.

Residents said the teens live nearby and often spend time riding the ATV around the area.

“It’s like every week. They (are) riding, you know, in the afternoons,” said Maria Aldape. “I got scared last night because the neighbors (and) everybody was scared and worried about the kids.”

Though residents are concerned for the teens, some said the parents are to blame for not paying enough attention.

“I heard they were riding the 4-wheelers. The dog got in front of them and I guess they ran over the dog and the 4-wheeler just flipped over,” said Laura Portales. “It’s tragic because, you know, the parents also have to be aware of their underage kids. They’re not supposed to be on 4-wheelers. You know, that’s what I think.”

The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles said the ATV shouldn’t have been on a public street, especially for a joy ride.

Deputies said the ATV belongs to one of the teens’ parents and they are just trying to figure out which one. It is unclear if the parent or parents could face charges.