At Grudge we take ATV safety and Quad Bike safety very seriously. Our vehicles are fitted with a number of safety features including hydraulic disc brakes and throttle governors for the kids quads. But as the user there are a number of tips you should follow that can help ensure you stay safe while riding your ATV.
1. Always wear a helmet and protective clothing, including riding gloves and boots.
There are a number of helmets on the market purpose built for ATV riding. The HQ Stockman 2 is that is light weight, easy to clean, well ventilated and doesn’t impede your vision or hearing while riding. Could you ask for more out of a helmet. Another popular alternative is the Shark ATV-Drak helmet which is also purpose built to ensure maximum safety for ATV and SSV riders. Remember if your helmet of choice is compliant to Australian standards you may be eligible for a rebate in your state. Information on rebates in NSW can be found here.
2. Never let a child under the age of 16 years old ride an adult sized ATV or Quad bike.
An adult sized quad bike can weigh around 300 kg, this is too hard for a child to control. The most common cause of injury in quad bikes accidents is from a child losing control or the vehicle rolling over on top of them. It really is never worth the risk! We carry a range of kids ATVs and have staff on hand to advise you regarding the right size quad for your child.
3. Get the proper skills training.
This will help you to be an active rider and understand your vehicles capabilities. A good ATV training course will also give you tips on how to recognise potential hazards when riding. Here is a list of queensland organisations that provide Quad Bike and ATV safety training courtesy of Worksafe QLD.
4. Never operate a ATV or Quad Bike vehicle while intoxicated.
Enough said really.
5. Never carry passengers on single seat ATV or Quad bike.
These vehicles are not designed to carry passengers, it adds additional weight and can also make it harder to control. Be sure to follow the manufacturers recommendations and never over load your vehicle especially on difficult and steep terrains.
6. Don’t forget to inspect your vehicle before every ride.
Some of the most common areas to inspect are below:
- Fuel and Oil. Check your fuel and oil levels are adequate for the ride
- Tyres. Make sure the air pressure is correct, check for cuts or gashes that could cause air leakage. A good way to detect worn-out wheel bearings or loose nuts is by grasping the tyre at the front and rear and rocking your vehicle on its axle. There should be no free play or slip as you rock the wheel.
- Brakes. Check your brakes are operating smoothly.
- Chain drive. Check your chain drive for wear, proper adjustment and adequate lubrication
- Coolant. Check the coolant level before every ride
- Foot pedal. Check the foot pedal is firmly attached. Positioning is also important, it should not be so low that your toes are pointed downward or so high as to make shifting awkward.
- Lights. Check your lights and switches are all working
- ATV parts can become loose while riding in rough terrain, always remember to check for loose parts before you head out for your next trip. This should be done with the engine off.
7. Always let someone know that you are going for a ride.
You should always let someone know when you are riding, where you are riding and when you are expecting to be back. Better to be safe than sorry!
Something else you might want to consider is installing a operation protection device on your ATV. The Quadbar or ATV Lifeguard are popular options that can provide you with crush protection in the event that the vehicle rolls. Rebates are available in a number of states for both of these operator protection devices. Check the criteria in your state on the local Worksafe website.
ATV riding is fun (some might say addictive) and a great way to get out and enjoy the great outdoors. Following the simple ATV safety steps above can help to ensure you enjoy the ride safely.
Stay safe and enjoy the ride!