The number of reported ATV accidents now hitting the headlines has increased dramatically in recent years. Rising in line with the overall popularity of such vehicles.
However, like all vehicles, it is not always the ATV quad bikes themselves that are dangerous, but rather how it is handled.
Making sure that all drivers undergo sufficient quad bike training is essential. This and that all drivers must wear the appropriate safety gear at all times, all help reduce the number of reported injuries.
It’s important to recognise that for all ATV’s are extremely useful, fun, and can handle the majority of terrains, they still can’t go everywhere.
Below, we look at some of the most common safety issues with quads as well as some of the precautions that can be put in place to make everyone’s riding experience is a positive one.
Main Safety Issues with Quads
Accidents can be prevented, and ATV quad bikes can be some of the safest vehicles out there if they are handled correctly.
These vehicles do have safe operating limits, which can rapidly become unstable if mishandled, and hence, most of the problems arise.
Some of the most common concerns with quads relate to:
Being thrown off as a quad overturns
Collisions with trees, stumps in the ground, etc
Being trapped under an overturned vehicle
Pedestrians being struck or run over
Contributing to these issues are factors such as:
Lack of formal training
Lack of experience
No proper head protection
Age of driver
Carrying a passenger (quads are designed for single use only)
Attempting too steep a slope
Taking excessive loads
Poor maintenance of the vehicle
All relating to the mishandling of the vehicle.
Be Safe, follow set precautions
Rules are regulations aren’t there to stop anyone from getting on with the job at hand, or indeed from having fun. They are there to keep people safe.
Advice from the team at Beckside Machinery follows:
Unlike UTV’s, quad bikes don’t come with full cabs or roll bars, so you need to make sure that you wear something that will protect you!
Helmets are essential! Opt for those who have been tested, have a chin strap, and can be used alongside suitable eye protection.
Wear clothing that is strong and makes sure both arms and legs are covered. Gloves and handlebar muffs are great in colder and wetter months, allowing for a better grip.
Boots or wellingtons are ideal in providing you with a strong and supportive grip to keep your feet grounded and avoiding slipping.
For children, they should wear the correct helmet, be supervised at all times, and must never be carried on quad bikes as a passenger.
It’s also essential that you maintain and take proper care of your quad bike. It’s an essential piece of equipment, and properly maintaining it helps to keep it in safe and good working order.
Make sure to take care on slopes and rough terrain. Be cautious of what the quad can handle and read carefully through user manuals, manufacturer guidelines and instructions for use.
Don’t carry out tasks that you feel would interfere with the safe riding of the quad, never exceeding the vehicle's capabilities, putting you and others at risk.
Never drive recklessly, or drive without any prior training or experience – remember, practice makes perfect!
And most importantly…keep both hands firmly gripped to the handlebars at all times!
Know your quad
For those ATV quad bikes for sale that are to be used on roads, and for those which are three years and older, they must have a valid MOT certificate. And as a driver, you must have a valid and full driving licence and as a minimum third-party insurance cover.
Quad bikes should also not be fitted with seatbelts or lap straps. This is because if a quad was to overturn, the driver needs to be able to jump from the vehicle or indeed be able to get out from underneath.
Weather cabs and coverings are also not recommended as it restricts visibility as well as the driver’s ability to jump clear from the vehicle in an emergency.
ATV quad bikes are a great way not only to get around but also a great piece of equipment to help with agricultural, horticultural and forestry work. Treating such powerful and robust vehicles with respect, they demand, following set guidelines, driving at appropriate speeds, and assessing terrain carefully will all help to keep you safe.
The HSE provides some excellent guidance on safe riding methods and best practice techniques.
For all quad bike enquiries, the team at Beckside Machinery are also on hand to help!
Call 01673 828 965