QUAD bike safety is back in the spotlight after a seven-year-old girl who was a passenger on a quad bike died after sustaining serious head injuries in a crash in South Australia last Sunday.
On December 28, a 19-year-old man riding a quad bike died as a result of a crash with another vehicle near Gympie in Queensland, while on November 11, a 63-year-old woman in Tasmania died after an apparent fall from a quad bike.
In July last year, a 13-year-old girl died after being pinned under the quad bike she had been riding at a property south of Wollongong.
In 2011, quad bike accidents claimed the lives of an 11-year-old boy on a farm at Woorndoo in Victoria, a four-year-old boy at Bouldercombe in Queensland, an 11-year-old boy at Murwillumbah, and an 11-year-old boy at Nurmukah, Victoria.
In mid-December, federal workplace relations minister Bill Shorten said Safe Work Australia would aim to instigate a ban on kids on quad bikes.
"With around 20 per cent of deaths involving children under 16 years of age, I am tasking Safe Work Australia to work with state and territory regulators to institute a ban on children under 16 years operating a quad bike of full size in a workplace," Mr Shorten told The Land.
"Manufacturers already have explicit warnings on full size quad bikes regarding age restriction recommendations, but we want to take this one step further and formally ban the use of all quad bikes in workplaces including farms for anyone under 16 years.
"The simple message is that kids and quad bikes do not and should not mix. Regrettably it is all too often a fatal combination," he said.
Since 2001 more than 150 Australians have died in quad bike incidents.
Of the 23 quad bike deaths recorded in 2011, 18 occurred on farms
Quad bikes are the leading cause of injury and death on Australian farms
Nine out of 10 rollover deaths occur on a farm