South Scotland

Drive to cut quad bike deaths on Scottish farms

Quad bike farmer Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Farmers have been warned not to become complacent and always use a helmet on a quad bike

A drive is being launched to try to cut the number of farm deaths in Scotland involving quad bikes.

The issue will be highlighted at Dumfries Agricultural Show this weekend.

Scotland's Rural College (SRUC) will be underlining the importance of wearing a helmet and "other simple rules" on the safe use of all-terrain vehicles.

Dave Roberts of its Barony Campus said there was a danger people could become complacent when using a quad bike.

"Our Be Safe on ATVs initiative will stress that all ATV riders should always wear a suitable helmet when riding a quad bike," he said.

SRUC will highlight its ATV safety initiative immediately after the National Farmers Union Scotland (NFUS) launches its overarching Health and Wellbeing in the Farming Community campaign earlier in the day at the show.

South of Scotland SNP MSP Emma Harper will visit the SRUC stand for the launch of the helmet safety drive.

Image copyright SRUC
Image caption The SRUC said a few "simple rules" could improve safety on ATVs

She has been at the forefront of a campaign to urge farmers to wear helmets to reduce preventable head injuries.

She said: "I am thrilled to see this project moving forward and action being taken by SRUC and NFUS to promote helmet safety on quad bikes - especially as they are two of the most influential organisations within the Scottish agricultural sector."

Apart from the need to wear a helmet, SRUC will be recommending a series of steps to reduce the risks from using ATVs.

These include:

  • carry out safety checks and maintenance in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations
  • secure loads on racks and make sure they are not overloaded, and are evenly balanced
  • stick to planned routes, where possible, and walk new routes if necessary to check for hidden obstructions, hollows or other hazards
  • take extra care with trailed or mounted equipment and understand how they affect stability
  • make sure all riders receive adequate training

SRUC also runs a series of safety training courses at its Barony Campus near Dumfries on the issue.

Related Topics

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites