Quad bikes are an essential piece of machinery for some farms but also feature in a number of farm fatalities each year. Let’s look at the health and safety requirements where the quad bike is the right vehicle for the job. These requirements, like with all farm machinery, can be broken up into categories of the Machinery (e.g. Quad Bike), the operator and safe systems of work.
Safety requirements include:
The Quad Bike
- Maintaining the quad bike as per the manufacturer’s instructions
- Put an Operator Protective Device* on the quad bike where there is a risk of roll over
- Consider doing a pre-operational check of your quad bikes before use, especially as changes in tyre pressure can increase bike instability.
- Where the bike is going onto public roads ensuring the bike is appropriately registered and the operator has a current motor vehicle license.
The Operator of the Quad Bike
- Provide training for the operator and supervise them until they are competent
- Ensure no-one under 16 rides an adult bike nor allows any passengers on a quad bike
- Wear appropriate clothing and PPE– work boots, long trousers, shirt/jacket and a helmet
- Induct the operator in the various tasks the quad bike is used for
Safe Systems of Work for Quad Bike Use
- Ensure that any loads whether carried on the bike or towed are within the manufacturers specifications
- Consider the environment the bike is being used in and modify use appropriately e.g. when on unstable or hilly terrain, in poor weather conditions, working in the dark.
- Consider safety when loading quad bikes on utes or trailers
- Consider whether there should be any “No Go Zones” on the farm and if needed then strictly enforce this rule
- Set and enforce speed limits for areas of the farm
*Operator Protective Devices can be purchased from Quad Bar Industries and ATV Lifeguards.
If you have questions around quad bike safety give the Workplace Relations team a call on 1300 882 833