Tougher quad bike safety standards start next month

The following article is a news item provided for the benefit of the Workplace Health and Safety profession. Its content does not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Institute of Health & Safety.
Friday, 10 September, 2021 - 12:45
Industry news
National News

The second phase of a national safety standard for quad bikes will come into effect next month on 11 October 2021.

This phase will require all new and imported second-hand general use quad bikes to be fitted with an operator protection device (OPD) or have one integrated into their design, and to meet minimum requirements for stability.

The purpose of an OPD is to hold the quad bike off the ground, helping to protect the rider from being crushed or pinned in the event of a rollover.

The Australian Government introduced a mandatory safety standard under the Australian Consumer Law with the introduction of the Consumer Goods (Quad Bikes) Safety Standard 2019.

The first stage of requirements for all quad bikes became mandatory on 11 October 2020, which required information to be affixed to new quad bikes about the degree of slope at which they will start to overturn.

Under the second phase, general use quad bikes must meet minimum static stability requirements and when subjected to a tilt table test with an average size male test dummy seated on the quad bike, general use model quad bikes must be able to achieve:

  • lateral roll stability (a minimum tilt table ratio of 0.55)
  • front and rear longitudinal pitch stability (a minimum tilt table ratio of 0.8)

A general use quad bike must also have one of the following devices fitted or integrated into its design:

  • an ATV Lifeguard
  • a Quadbar
  • a device that offers the same, or better, level of protection for operators from the risk of being crushed or pinned in a rollover.

At this stage, youth and sports quad bikes are not required to be fitted with an OPD due to the lack of testing of after-market OPDs designed for these categories.

The standard does not apply to second-hand quad bikes other than those second-hand quad bikes that are imported into Australia.

The ACCC’s Product Safety Australia website provides more information on quad bikes and the mandatory safety standards.