Fatalities prompt quad bike investigation

Long recognised as a hazard for zero turn mowers. USA OSHA 2005.

When you go over an edge you need all the safety features you can get,

Commercial grade zero turn or similar wide deck mowers in Australia appear to universally come fitted with roll over protection. The generally lighter and cheaper residential series machines may have the option fitted or available as an expensive accessory.

Zero turn mowers are not suitable for operation on steeper slopes or cross grades despite having a low centre of gravity. Counter intuitive.

The smaller tractor style most commonly do not have any provision for roll over protection. These are available with diff locking or 4WD options with better traction on slopes, but are less stable than zero turns!

Both tractor style and zero turn mowers are heavy enough to cause serious injury or entrapment if they roll or tip.

One of the best options for keeping grass down on slopes comes with four hooves in a variety of breeds and colours. Alternately there is the Razorback. Also in 4WD.

Not sure if this is the best topic to be discussing ride on mower safety.

An article regarding quad bike tragedies.

Some more quad bike fatalities as the new regulations are about to start.

Another article.

Just as well the fools who oppose this safety measure were not involved when roll over protection was mandated for tractors and such like machinery.

Another article.

’ “I have given evidence at four coronial inquests into quad bike deaths and the Victorian government has now made it illegal for landholders to use a quad bike without fitting rollover protection.”

Professor Grzebieta said it was “essential” NSW followed suit.

“If farmers don’t do it. they could end up in court,” he said.’

Looks like all those who raced out to buy unsafe quad bikes before the new legislation took effect may have simply shot themselves in the foot.

It reminds me of the old saying “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink”.

Perhaps you can lead a farmer to safety but you can’t make him think.

Some improvements being made in quad bike safety compliance after ACCC/state and territory surveillance. According to the ACCC:

Tragically, there have been 180 deaths associated with the use of quad bikes since 2011. The number of deaths has reduced significantly since 2020 when there were 24 lives lost in quad bike incidents, to 11 in 2021 and nine so far this year.

And also:

Follow these safety tips when using a quad bike:

  • Ensure you are properly trained before you ride a quad bike
  • Always wear a helmet
  • Never let children ride quad bikes that are meant for adults — even as passengers
  • Do not carry any passengers on quad bikes that are meant for one person
  • Avoid riding on rough terrain or steep slopes
  • Take extra care in wet weather and be aware of obstacles
  • Never ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Ensure children are supervised at all times near any quad bike activity
  • Fit operator protection devices to older quad bikes that were purchased prior to the introduction of the standard.