The tragic death in Southland involving a quad bike underscores that not all accidents and fatalities involving these bikes are ‘farm related’.
“Quad bikes are not toys and we grieve when anyone dies,” says Jeanette Maxwell, Federated Farmers spokesperson for health and safety.
“That is amplified when they are so young and so full of promise. Given the time of year, I cannot begin to imagine what the family and friends involved are experiencing.
“It seems, from media reports at least, that the death in Southland was recreational in nature instead of being occupational.
“Whether recreational or occupational, it underscores a duty to ensure any user of these bikes is appropriately trained in their proper use.
“Having fielded a number of media calls, there seems to be an unhelpful tendency to assume all quad bike accidents are farm related. It is also easy to overlook that there are a similar number of quad bikes in New Zealand as there are road-going motorcycles.
“If this death is confirmed as recreational, it would be the second since October. This may indicate a gap in the way we are communicating safety messages to casual quad bike users.
“Quad bikes are not toys but powerful machines and this tragic accident reminds us of this fact,” Mrs Maxwell concluded.