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AHCMOM217 - Operate Quad Bikes

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Course Overview

This course shows a participant how to operate the Quad Bike safely in any environment. This unit of competency is designed for participants wanting to develop their knowledge and skills in maintaining and operating quad bikes (four wheeled). It includes performing routine pre-operational checks and maintenance, matching, attaching and operating equipment as described in the manufacturer's operator’s manual; recognising and controlling hazards and risks; safely operating quad bikes in a range of weather and terrain conditions and monitoring and maintaining vehicle records. This unit applies to workers in the agriculture, horticulture and conservation and land management sectors who use quad bikes as part of their daily work routines or any individual for recreational purposes.

"Quad Bikes are now the leading cause of non-intentional injury death on Australian farms (outranking tractors). Deaths are evenly distributed between rollovers, where asphyxiation/ crush injury are common and non-rollovers, where the victim is flung onto a hard surface as a result of a quad bike crash. Almost 9 out of every 10 rollover deaths occur on a farm.

Farmers who are employers or in control of the farm workplace have responsibility under work health and safety law to provide safe systems of work for workers and visitors to the workplace, including the operation of quads".*

Course Duration

This unit is delivered face-to-face using a combination of theory and practical activities at the client's private property or workplace over 1-2 days, depending on prior experience.

Course Content

Safety is the emphasis in each lesson.

  • OH&S responsibilities
  • Personal protective equipment - PPE
  • Pre-Operation vehicle inspection
  • Identification of Controls
  • Machine Control Techniques
  • Starting/Stopping/Reversing
  • Use of Gear Ranges, Diff Locks/4WD (where applicable)
  • Turning (Gradual/Quick)
  • Braking Techniques/Emergency Stop
  • Swerving
  • Riding Over Obstacles
  • Hills (Ascend/Descend/Traverse/Recovery)
  • Difficult Terrain
  • Carrying loads & towing trailers
  • Safe procedures for load/unloading from vehicles & trailers
  • Environmental issues
  • Assessment of terrain for vehicle suitability



On successful completion of this course, students will be issued with a nationally recognised Statement of Attainment for AHCMOM217 Operate Quad Bikes


Quad Bike operators should:

  • Complete a quad bike training course
  • Never allow passengers on the quad bike unless is has been specifically designed to carry two people
  • Wear a helmet and other personal protective equipment (PPE) when practical to do so
  • Make sure all cargo is secured before riding
  • Undertake 'active riding' techniques 
  • Carefully descend slopes by keeping the quad bike in low gear and allowing the motor compression to act as a brake
  • Operate the quad bike at a safe speed
  • Read and comply with manufacturer's advice in the owner's manual 


Quad Bike operators should NOT:

  • Overload the quad bike beyond manufacturer's specifications
  • Allow children under 16 years to ride adult-sized quad bikes 
  • Carry passengers, unless the quad bike has additional seats and foot-pegs 
  • Operate on unfamiliar terrain, rough terrain or steep slopes, especially when carrying cargo or towing
  • Exceed towing limits
  • Operate a quad bike while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Operate a quad bike beyond their capabilities 


Why are quad bikes an important issue?

There is a high incidence of serious injury and fatality arising from quad bike use.

The Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety (AgHealth) collates data on all fatalities, including those that occur in the workplace, and reports that since 2001:

  • over 190* Australians have died in quad bike incidents
  • quad bike incidents are the leading cause of injury deaths on Australian farms (outranking tractors by almost 2:1), and
  • deaths are evenly distributed between roll overs, asphyxiation/crush injuries and non-roll overs.

AgHealth data shows in 2013:

  • 21 fatalities were reported of which 15 occurred on a farm
  • Of the 21 fatalities, 11 (52%) were rollovers.

* Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety

CLICK HERE for Quad Bike Fatality Statistics according to SAFE WORK Australia.


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