If you’re a quad bike rider, make the effort to be ride ready. There have been 26 quad bike deaths in Queensland in the last five years, over three quarters of them were male and 14 per cent were under 16 years of age.
Across Australia almost 8000 people were admitted to hospital after something just didn’t go to plan on a quad
Being ‘ride ready’ means having the right experience and knowledge to anticipate what can go wrong – whether it’s a hidden rock or a log in long grass, a gully washed-out from a recent storm or animals behaving unexpectedly. You might only need to slow down, carry a lighter load, be wary of slopes and rough terrain or re-think the task being done.
Here’s some of our safety tips to help you become ride ready:
Select the right vehicle for the job
Quad bikes are useful, but they are not always the best first choice. Sometimes there will be a better option. A side-by-side vehicle or a ute is better if you need to carry loads or passengers, or if you’re mustering consider using a horse or motorbike instead.
Helmets are a must
Being prepared for the unexpected makes sense. Helmets are the best protection you can have from a serious head
injury, yet in one-third of incidents the rider was not wearing one.
Rollovers can be prevented
Half of all incidents involve a quad bike rollover. Quad bikes have a high centre of gravity, which makes them more prone to rollovers. You can help manage rollovers by improving your rider skills through formal training and knowing the terrain where you’re riding.
Never let kids ride adult bikes
We encourage parents and supervisors to be aware of the dangers of kids riding on adult bikes. Kids just don’t have the physical strength and weight to properly control a 350kg adult quad bike. Kids also shouldn’t double on quad bikes ridden by adults – weight distribution plays an important part in safe riding.
There have been too many incidents where kids have come off second best. Please never let kids under 16 ride an adult bike. Instead they should only use a quad bike suitable for their size and which they can properly handle. They might be able to ride well in most stable conditions, but are they ride ready for the unexpected?
The rules on roads have changed
If you need to ride on or cross public roads then you will need to conditionally register your quad bike for road use. You will also need to wear an approved helmet and not carry any child under eight as a passenger on a quad bike or side-by-side vehicle. Failure to do so can lead to heavy fines and loss of demerit points. Visit qld.gov.au/transport/ to find out more.
We want everyone to be ride ready. Go ahead, take the challenge at qld.gov.au/rideready.
Safety in the agriculture industry
Work health and safety is critical for every business. Workers should be able to go home safely at the end of each day, but statistics consistently show a much sadder story. While only three per cent of Queenslanders work on farms and rural properties, they account for more than 30 per cent of deaths. Most of these fatalities could have been avoided if better safety procedures had been taken. Stop and think about the task you or your workers are about to do and check if there’s a safer way.
We’re not just about compliance. The safety, health and wellbeing of employers and workers in the agriculture industry is a priority.
We work closely with industry associations to introduce best practice management programs such as Grazing BMP to improve safety practices, productivity and the safety culture at your business.
Together with other government agencies we help ensure vulnerable workers, such as backpackers, have the same levels of safety and well-being. Our programs also help businesses manage risk, find solutions to prevent injury and support rehabilitation and return to work.
There’s more information in our Serious about farm safety guide available at worksafe.qld.gov.au.
We recognise safety
Growers and graziers are always finding innovative ways to improve safety. We want to recognise your achievements through our Safe Work and Return to Work Awards. You can enter each year and win up to $2000 per category.
Safety is important for kids too. Primary school kids can put their artistic talents to good use and enter a drawing about farm safety to our Farm safety calendar competition. Each year, twelve winners are featured in the following year’s calendar.
Find out more about how we recognise safety at worksafe.qld.gov.au.
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Farm safe. Home safe.
Article kindly provided by Workplace Health and Safety Queensland.