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Education is the key to quad safety

STAY SAFE: Geoff Udy, of Udy Quad Country in Toowoomba, says quads are not unsafe and instead riders need advanced training.
STAY SAFE: Geoff Udy, of Udy Quad Country in Toowoomba, says quads are not unsafe and instead riders need advanced training. Tara Miko

GEOFF Udy has spent a lifetime around quads and wants to set the record straight on their safety.

Mr Udy has sold quads at his store Udy Quad Country, used them on his property and has even raced them.

And he said while some people may think they are a dangerous machine, he insists quads do not hurt people.

"Quads don't hurt anybody. It's only the decisions or wrong decision that the operator makes," he said.

"Quads have been refined over 30 years, they can't make them really a whole lot safer, they just really need to reprogram the person on the handlebars."

And while there have been quad bike fixtures that Mr Udy said he has not believed in, there is a product that gained popularity at the recent FarmFest that he believes is the "real deal".

The New Zealand product, the Lifeguard Crush Protection Device, is a great option according to Mr Udy.

The device attaches to the quad bike and is a flexible product, designed to reduce the risk of severe injury or death following a roll over.

"I got approached by a customer at FarmFest saying would you supply me two of these," Mr Udy said.

Geoff Udy from Udy's Quad Country said this Lifeguard crush protection device is one of the best he has seen.
Geoff Udy from Udy's Quad Country said this Lifeguard crush protection device is one of the best he has seen. Contributed

"He is from an area out near Blackall and we lost a friend called Ashley Adams out there. He flipped off his quad and died.

"And I don't want to sound blase about it, but Ashley died the way he lived, everything was flat out and he wouldn't disagree with me."

Mr Udy explained it was when Mr Adams was racing back on his quad on his property, that he forgot about an open trench, hit the ditch and flipped.

"I will say I think in that situation this Lifeguard probably would have changed the outcome," he said.

"It is all very well to be wise in retrospect but if a customer like this one at FarmFest had qualms about his family and friends on quads, then this is a good investment."

Mr Udy believes there is paranoia around the safety of quad bikes. He also said that only about 50 per cent of quad bike accidents are on-farm, the remaining half being recreational.

"I have raced all my life since the late 60s and I have lived close to the edge all the time," Mr Udy said.

"If I go over the edge it is my error of judgement.

"The FarmFest just gone we sold several quads, the FarmFest a year before we hardly sold a quad. That was the level of paranoia."

Mr Udy said people had to come to practical terms with the realities.

"We fall off ladders, we fall off roofs, it's part of human nature and you talk to most people after an accident and it is usually an error of their own judgement," he said.

Mr Udy said one of the best things people could do in terms of quad bike safety was advanced training.

"My thoughts on it are - research the tragedies, make the top ten scenarios that have caused tragedy or injury and set up those scenarios as a school and invite people to come and do a course," he said.

"I think you would find it would be well attended by property owners. There is a strong feeling out there to have advanced training."

Topics:  farm quad bikes toowoomba


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