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Quad deaths rise to 64 in last 13 years

Since 2006, 64 people have been killed on quad bikes while working, most of them farmers and farm workers.

In 2017-18 there were 2187 quad bike injury claims to ACC costing $13.4 million. While the numbers of claims have fallen in the last five years, the amount has risen from $10.5m.

And yet manufacturers, the Motor Industry Association and Federated Farmers remain opposed to the mandatory fitting of rollover protection devices.

WorkSafe said it would make a major announcement on quad bikes later this month, but gave no indication what it would be.  

In Australia the Competition and Consumer Commission has recommended the devices become mandatory, but a decision awaits the result of the general election.

Honda has threatened to stop selling quad bikes in Australia if the recommendation becomes law, saying studies had shown the devices do not improve safety.

Honda New Zealand, which has 40 per cent of the market, refused to comment but Motor Industry Association chief executive David Crawford was sceptical the rollover devices would make a difference.

"Where's the data that says there will be a safety gain?" he asked.

He said better ways of guaranteeing safety included the compulsory use of helmets, training, adequate maintenance and ensuring the right bikes were used by people of the right age.

However general manager of the Agricultural Leaders' Health and Safety Action Group Tony Watson had a simple response to those who opposed protection devices. 

"If you want to go and talk to a family who's lost a loved one on a device which appears to have little or no redeeming safety features, then they won't really care too much about the data."

Source: Stuff