Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Quadbike holiday concerns

With some farms hosting visitors over the holidays, farmers are being reminded of the dangers of quadbikes.

January 10, 2013 4:08am

Farmers are being urged to take care of their families and themselves during the holiday season by taking safety precautions with quad bikes.

VFF Farmsafe Alliance manager Tim McKenzie said quad bikes were a major cause of death and injury to Australian farmers and their children.

‘‘The trauma associated with a lot of these life-changing injuries is overwhelming,’’ Mr McKenzie said.

Adult-size quad bikes are covered in manufacturer warnings stating children under the age of 16 should never operate the vehicle.

Mr McKenzie said all riders had to wear helmets and other protective clothing, as well as be properly trained to use the vehicle. Quad bikes must be in safe operating condition.

Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety director Tony Lowers said analysis of coronial data and hospital admissions from Victoria showed for every death on a quad bike there were another 80 who attended hospital, of which 40 were admitted.

The most serious injuries included spinal and head injuries, which had a devastating impact on the lives of the victims and their families.

‘‘It is vital farmers take the necessary precautions to protect themselves and their families,’’ Mr McKenzie said.

Fourteen Australians died last year in quad bike accidents.

Mr McKenzie welcomed quad bike manufacturer CFMoto’s decision last month to deliver discounted crush protection devices to buyers.

‘‘It is good to see a manufacturer finally stepping up to the mark and offering farmers an incentive to fit CPDs,’’ Mr McKenzie said.

‘‘We need to ensure every option is available to farmers, who want to protect themselves, their families and their workers.’’

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