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Turf QLD Industry Alert |Quad bike deaths continue in 2014

Quad bike deaths continue in 2014

A new report focusing on quad‐related deaths and injuries reported in the media in 2014 has been released by the Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety (University of Sydney). The report provides a snapshot of the human suffering associated with quads.

“There were 15 recorded quad‐related deaths in 2014, maintaining the 10 year average of 14 deaths per year.” said Centre Director Dr Tony Lower.

“Of these deaths 12 (80 per cent) occurred on farms, with a further two involving cases on public roads where the quads were turning into/out of a farm. The information also highlights the fatal mix of children and quads, with three cases involving children less than 16 years of age”.

“There were also at least 86 injuries serious enough to be reported in the media, with many likely to be life changing, including spinal and brain injuries” stated Dr Lower.

“All of these incidents have a huge impact on individuals, families and communities”.

Overall 60 per cent of deaths and 41 per cent of injuries involved rollovers. “This reinforces the need for design improvements to reduce the risk of death and serious injury when quads roll. Part of the problem is that quads have an ‘illusion of stability’ but as a Victorian Coroner identified, quads are ‘prone to rollover’ and when they do, they kill and maim people”.

Recommendations to improve safety must start with selecting the safest vehicle for the task that needs to be completed and in the majority of cases, this will not be a quad. However, if a quad is still to be used and given the high rate of rollover incidents, then a suitably tested crush protection device should be fitted.

This is an increasingly common approach for many farmers and businesses that use quads and recognise their danger. Keeping children off quads of any size, not carrying passengers and wearing a helmet are also important preventive actions.


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