This week is Farm Safety Week, and Safe Work Australia are focussing on quad bikes – a major cause of death and serious injury in rural workplaces.
The Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety found that quad bikes were the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal on-farm injuries in the first six months of 2017.
Safe Work Australia (SWA) is urging employers to consider replacing quad bikes with safer vehicles, acknowledging that nearly two-thirds of the country’s 115 quad bike fatalities occurred on farms.
Agriculture, whilst a rewarding industry to work in, is also one of the most dangerous. 115 people have lost their lives on quad bikes in Australia since 2011, and almost two-thirds of those have occurred on farms.
SWA CEO Michelle Baxter said that one of the best ways to prevent quad bike injuries and deaths is to “critically assess if a quad bike is the right vehicle for the job”, and substitute it with safer equipment if its not.
Of the nine quad bike fatalities that have occurred this year already, over half involved rollovers, and two were children (aged 16 and under).
Non fatal injuries cost around $100 million in farm workers compensation
Refer to Safe Work Australia website for more details.