With 136 lives lost since 2011, quad bikes rank significantly higher than any other vehicle in terms of fatalities per 1000 vehicles.
According to Australia's consumer watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, over 60 per cent of these deaths were the result of a bike rollover, resulting in the rider receiving fatal crush injuries or asphyxiating because they were pinned beneath the quad bike.
ACCC deputy chair Mick Keogh said the ACCC is urging people to be vigilant about safety when using quad bikes and side-by-side vehicles this summer.
"The summer holidays are one of the most common times for quad bike and SSV deaths in Australia, so it is important to remember to ride safely," he said.
"Make sure you are properly trained, wear the appropriate safety gear, and never ride under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
"It's also a good idea to tell someone where you're going and when you plan to return."
Mr Keogh said the ACCC was also encouraging owners to install an operator protection device to make their quad bikes safer.
Often referred to as a crush protection device or roll-bar, an OPD helps protect the rider from serious crush injuries or asphyxiation by creating a crawl out space when the quad bike is overturned.
"You don't need to wait for the new safety standard to come into effect to upgrade your current quad bike to a safer one," he said.
Mr Keogh said while SSVs were often touted as a safer alternative vehicle to quad bikes, due to increased stability, available seat belts and an inbuilt roll cage, caution was still needed given seven deaths were reported so far this year.
"We have seen a significant increase in fatalities associated with the use of SSVs because people are not wearing the seat belts that are installed in the vehicle," he said.
"Even more disturbing is that 40 per cent of these deaths have been children, with the youngest a three-year-old boy.
"Please do not be complacent about your safety and those of your loved ones. Our message is clear - wear a seatbelt every time you get into an SSV."
The ACCC is urging people to follow a number of key safety tips:
- Ensure you are properly trained
- Maintain the vehicle so it is in safe condition
- Install an operator protection device on your quad bike
- Read the operator manual and observe the manufacturer's safety warnings and recommended use of the vehicle
- Before you leave for a ride or for work, always tell someone where you plan to go and when you expect to return
- Always wear a helmet
- Wear protective gear such as goggles, long sleeves, long pants, boots and gloves
- Never let children ride quad bikes or SSVs that are meant for adults
- Do not carry any passengers on quad bikes that are meant for one person
- Do not carry any passengers in the rear tray of a SSV
- Use a seatbelt in an SSV
- Quad bikes and SSVs are not all-terrain vehicles so they cannot go safely on all types of terrain. Avoid riding on rough terrain, steep slopes or hard, flat surfaces (such as tarmac and asphalt)
- Ride on familiar tracks and beware of obstacles
- Never ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Ensure children are supervised at all times near any quad bike or SSV activity
- Always carry a mobile phone or radio device so you can contact help in case of an emergency
The story Consumer watchdog warns parents to keep kids safe this holiday first appeared on Farm Online.