The Queensland Government is reminding quad bike users to be safe during the festive season.
Quad bike Safety Advocate Jodie Cocco says it doesn’t matter how the quads are being used, everyone has to respect just how dangerous these vehicles can be.
“Sadly, more than 70 people have been killed on quad bikes in Queensland alone since 2001, and that’s around 30 per cent of all quad bike-related deaths in Australia”, Ms. Cocco said.
“Queensland has the highest number of quad bike-related hospitalisations with around 1,500 over a five year period. A few years back my son Domenic was one of those hospitalisations and we were lucky not to lose him after a quad accident.
“There were also approximately 3,000 quad bike-related emergency department presentations and more than 1,000 ambulance attendances.
“So whether these machines are used by kids, farmers, recreational riders, or adventure tourists, it’s all about riding them safely.”
Recent research commissioned by Workplace Health and Safety Queensland shows there’s been an improvement in attitudes and behaviours when it comes to quad bike safety.
“From February 2016 to August 2018 research shows quad bike users are more likely to wear a helmet and less likely to let others get away with not wearing one,” said Ms. Cocco.
“They’re less likely than a couple of years ago to carry passengers on quads designed for a single rider or attach heavy equipment to their quad.
“These are encouraging signs that ongoing safety awareness campaigns are working and important messages are getting through.
“However, we have to do more to cut quad bike deaths and serious injuries across the state, and ultimately, across Australia.
“And that means some very deep-seated attitudes need to change.
“It scares me that the majority of quad bike users are confident they are riding safely and consider themselves ‘ride-ready’.
“Clearly the injury and fatality stats show that’s not really the case.
“Sadly, overconfidence presents a significant risk – people falsely believing that nothing bad will happen to them because they have been riding responsibly for years and their bike and equipment are safe.
“If this was, in fact, the case, there’d be far fewer incidents and my family wouldn’t have gone through what we’ve had to face.
“All we ask is for everyone to remember the basic safety tips before venturing out this holiday period – always wear a helmet, never let kids ride adult-sized quad bikes, and get some training before hopping on a quad bike.”
Additional information on quad bike safety is available on www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/rideready