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ACCC urges safe use of quad bike risks

by S Lowe 5THE FM newsonline wattlerangenow

Source:  ACCC 15 April 2014

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is urging safe quad bike use ahead of the Easter long weekend. Sadly, there have been five quad bike related deaths this year, with 60 deaths reported between 2011 and 2013.

“Riding a quad bike can be a very dangerous activity. All riders, no matter how experienced, need to take precautions to avoid serious injury or death,” ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard said.

Half of the deaths reported since 2011 were associated with recreational use. Over the last three years, at least one in three riders who died was not wearing a helmet.

“Ensuring you prepare safe, wear safe and ride safe will reduce your risk of being seriously injured or even killed in a quad bike accident,” Ms Rickard said.

“Riders are advised to wear protective gear at all times. This includes a helmet, long sleeves, long pants, boots or other sturdy shoes with a closed toe, and gloves.”

“Quad bikes are not suitable for all terrains. They cannot be safely used on all slopes and surfaces. Even experienced riders have been injured when their quad bike has tipped or rolled,” Ms Rickard said.

Tragically, one in six quad bike related deaths between 2011 and 2013 involved children under 14 years old.

“Quad bikes can be particularly dangerous for children because they do not have the size, strength or coordination of adults. Parents and carers should never let children ride quad bikes meant for adults,” Ms Rickard said.

The ACCC has launched a YouTube video, ‘Would You Risk It?’ that highlights the life-threatening dangers of unsafe quad bike practices.

The ACCC will also enlist the support of quad bike suppliers to encourage them to pass on the safety messages and video directly to their customers.

Prepare safe:

  • Ensure you are properly trained before you ride a quad bike.
  • Maintain the bike so it is in safe condition.
  • Read the operator manual and observe the manufacturer’s safety warnings and recommended use of the vehicle.

Wear safe:

  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Wear protective clothing and gear such as goggles, long sleeves, long pants, boots and gloves/hand protection.

Ride safe:

  • Never let children ride quad bikes that are meant for adults—even as passengers.
  • Do not carry any passengers on quad bikes that are only meant for one person.
  • Avoid riding on rough terrain or steep slopes.

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