Skip to content
Four-wheel drive utilities

Farm utes are a critical tool in any farm business. Theyare often used on the open road as well. Regardless of whether a ute leaves the farm, it should still be maintained to manufacturers specifications and operated in a safe manner

  • One of the most valuable investments in your farm vehicles is maintenance.
    • Use the operator's manual to ensure maintenance is carried out in a timely and appropriate manner. In reality, if a vehicle wouldn’t pass a road worthy, it probably shouldn’t be used on farm!
    • Tyres, brakes (including handbrakes), steering, suspension and structural issues should all be carefully monitored.
    • Often farm vehicles are maintained on farm, so ensure this is done by a competent person and a record is kept.

  • Even though a farm is private property, conditions can change quickly and without warning.
    • To this end, a responsible driving style is critical. Wear a seatbelt and drive to conditions at all times.

  • Our utes are often our workhorses, carrying loads around the farm and towing a trailer.
    • Don’t overload the ute or trailer, ensure loads are well-secured, and don’t carry passengers in the tray!
Read more
Quad bikes

Most of us know of a story of someone who was injured or killed on a quad bike. This is because they are the largest cause of fatalities in farming in Australia. There are a few things we can do to make the operation of quad bikes safer.

Video 6 - Quad bikes - Captioned
  • Choose the right quad bike.
    • All new bikes will be fitted with an Operator Protective device.
    • If you have an old bike, it is highly recommended to get one of these fitted. Crush injuries are the most common cause of death and these devices can help reduce that cause!
    • Consider the stability rating of the bike when purchasing a new bike.

  • PPE on quad bikes is essential.
    • A helmet is a must, and gloves, eye protection, long pants and sturdy boots are highly recommended.

  • Ensuring you have competent operators on your quad is essential.
    • This means people who have been adequately trained to use an active riding style to manage varied conditions, including traversing slopes.
    • No passengers should be on the quad.
    • No one under the age of 16 should operate the quad.

  • Quad maintenance is something we can all improve on.
    • Steering, suspension, brakes, and tyre pressure are all important to ensure the bike can be operated safely.
    • Refer to the manufacturers' guidelines on how to maintain your bike correctly and ensure you have someone trained and qualified to do the job!
Read more
Motor bikes

Two-wheel motorbikes are a great tool for moving stock and moving from place to place. Motorbikes can be a great source of fun outside work hours - and cause accidents when not maintained and operated correctly.

Video 7 - Motorbikes - Captioned
  • Correct PPE is essential.
    • Helmets that meet Australian standards, gloves, goggles, long pants and solid boots.

  • Ensure anyone on motorbikes on the farm is competent and trained to ride the bike.
    • Refer to the operator’s manual and adjust riding to experience and conditions.

  • The farming environment can be varied and change without notice.
    • Ensure you are aware of holes, bogs, scrap wire and other paddock obstacles that could cause an accident.

  • Ensure the bike is maintained to manufacturers' specifications. Make sure:
    • Guards are in place such as chain and exhaust guards
    • Handle bars are straight
    • Tyre grip and pressure is appropriate
    • Brakes are working and adjusted regularly
Read more

Side-by-side vehicles are becoming increasingly common on farms. They are a safer alternative to quad bikes that are designed to carry a passenger and a load. They also have a rollover frame and seatbelt fitted for improved safety. Here are some tips on how to ensure the safe operation of these vehicles.

Video 8 - Side by sides - Captioned
  • Given side-by-side vehicles have a higher order of a protection by way of a rollover protection and seatbelt, judgement is required as to when a helmet should be worn.
    • At any time, seatbelts should be worn and doors closed.
    • Helmets should be worn if specified by the manufacturer, or if you are traversing rough terrain, travelling at speeds, or anticipate turning quickly.

  • One advantage of the side-by-side is the ability to carry a load.
    • Ensure the load is not beyond the capacity of the vehicle and is restrained appropriately.
    • Also be aware that the stability of the vehicle will be affected when carrying a load.
    • Passengers are not allowed to travel in the tray of the vehicle.

  • As with any machinery or vehicle, maintenance is the key.
    • Tyre pressure can have a huge impact on the stability of the side-by-side and should be tested regularly using a low-pressure tyre gauge.
    • Regularly check steering and brakes.
    • Ensure fire risk is reduced by cleaning dead grass from ignition sources such as the exhaust.
Read more

Continue Learning