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Four wheels, one life: kick-starting National Farm Safety Week

18 July 2011

Farmers are being urged to take more care on their four wheeled motorbikes during this year’s National Farm Safety Week, as the number of fatalities from quad bike accidents reaches 12 deaths so far this year.

“In the past 10 years, over 130 lives have been tragically lost on Australian farms due to quad bike accidents,” National Farmers’ Federation CEO Matt Linnegar said.

“Quad bikes are an important piece of farm machinery, but they can also be dangerous when not operated safety or correctly. They are the leading cause of on-farm vehicle-related deaths in Australia and the main cause of fatal injuries in children aged 5-14 on farms.

“Sadly, too many lives are lost in preventable farm accidents, and we are urging farmers, their families and workers to take care,” Mr Linnegar said.

Today marks the first day of National Farm Safety Week, an initiative of FarmSafe Australia and its members, including the NFF. National Farm Safety Week runs until Friday, and is about raising awareness of farm safety issues among rural communities and helping to reduce the risk of injury and illness.

“This year, the focus is all about quad bike safety, and FarmSafe and the NFF are encouraging all farmers to access relevant training, follow safe work practices and always wear suitable protective clothing, including a helmet,” Mr Linnegar said.

“We hope the incidences of quad bike accidents can be greatly reduced by farmers adhering to some simple rules, like not overloading quads, ensuring they’re used for the intended purposes only, and not allowing children under 16 to operate them.

“Keeping farming families and workers safe is the focus this week, and should be every week,” Mr Linnegar said.

For more information about National Farm Safety Week, or to access fact sheets on quad bike safety, visit the FarmSafe website.

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