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Safety call for quad bike users

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale

QUAD bike users are being urged to check their training is up-to-date.

The warning from Scotlandís Rural College follows a first time safety initiative piloted at the Barony campus in Dumfries.
It targeted young farmers in a safety campaign following research by the Farm Safety Foundation that found people aged 18-40 were most likely to take risks when working on a farm. In a survey of 500 farmers they found 47 per cent of young farmers admit tackling potentially risky jobs without the proper skills, while 16 per cent say they would follow an instruction, even if they doubted its safety.
Youngsters were put through their paces on campus with a series of simulated accident scenes and challenged to discuss how to prevent such incidents happening.
However, Barony staff are concerned the older generation are ignoring their responsibilities when it comes to using ATV quad bikes.
SRUC’s John Mallon said: “Recent evidence suggests some farmers have not passed inspection. From their early days as a modified motorbike, ATVs have become more sophisticated. You cannot assume every quad bike operates in the same way.
“In addition to the obvious, like wearing a helmet, it is important to know how to operate safely on steep ground.
He added:
“It is not fully understood that it is a legal requirement for anyone using a quad bike on farm to have a certificate proving they have been trained.”
To find out more go to www.sruc.ac.uk/atvtraining.

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