Farming company fined following quad bike incident involving young boy

Wellington – A small farming company was sentenced last week following a 2016 incident in which a young boy had a narrow escape after he fell from a quad bike and was run over by the equipment which was being towed behind it.

The six-year-old boy was riding on the back of a quad bike doing tasks on the farm when the incident happened. He was taken to a hospital by a helicopter and had suffered a fracture to his left leg that required multiple surgeries.

WorkSafe Deputy General Manager, Investigations and Specialist Services, Simon Humphries says kids should not be allowed on adult-sized quad bikes as riders or passengers.

“It might look like fun and a way to keep the kids amused but the risk of death or injury needs to outweigh the entertainment factor. There is little contest between a quad and a child. These are heavy and powerful machines that requires the rider’s full attention. A child does not have the physical strength or risk recognition to be an independent passenger, especially on a vehicle that is not designed for carrying extra people.”

An investigation revealed that while the company was aware of the dangers associated with quad bikes, they still allowed children to ride on occasion.

“The dangers associated with quads are very well known. There is considerable guidance available that clearly states that children should not ride on quads. This was a lucky escape and a reminder to other farm owners, especially families on farms to think about how their kids are interacting with the farm business and how they can be sure to keep them safe.”

The company was fined $ 12,000.

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