The following is a joint media release from the Commonwealth Small Business Minister Michael McCormack and Commonwealth Employment Minister Michaelia Cash.
A Taskforce led by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will conduct an investigation into quad bike safety under plans announced today by the Minister for Employment Michaelia Cash and Minister for Small Business Michael McCormack.
Minister Cash said it was tragic that between 2011 and 2016 there have been 106 fatalities in Australia linked to quad bike accidents – ten occurring in this calendar year alone.
“The sheer number of deaths and injuries necessitates close co-operation between Governments to address quad bike safety as an urgent priority,” Minister Cash said.
“Quad bikes are important work vehicles for many people, particularly in rural and regional areas, but it is critical that these vehicles are made and used safely.”
The Turnbull Government, with the co-operation of the States and Territories, established the Inter-Departmental Committee (IDC) on the safety of quad bikes which includes the Department of Employment, the ACCC, SafeWork NSW, WorkSafe Victoria and WorkSafe Tasmania.
Minister for Small Business Michael McCormack said the ACCC Taskforce will work with the IDC to examine solutions to improve quad bike safety, including whether to introduce a quad bike product safety standard.
“My most important job as Minister Responsible for Consumer Affairs is to protect Australian consumers’ safety,” Mr McCormack said.
“As a country MP, I know how important quad bikes can be for work on the farm and how many people enjoy riding the bikes for fun too, so we need to find a solution where both practical and recreational riders can be confident and safe.
“Today, the Minister and I are announcing a new ACCC taskforce which will specifically look at whether the Government should introduce a new product safety standard for quad bikes. This standard may include education materials and labelling for bikes, and will consider issues such as power, weight and roll-over risk of bikes.
“This research and any recommendations will also feed into considerations of a wider safety rating system.
“The ACCC and the IDC will consult extensively on any potential changes to the regulation of quad bike safety, recognising any change impacts consumers, small businesses and industry, ensuring we consider all points of view to make an informed decision on how to improve quad bike safety.
“The Minister and I encourage all interested parties to make submissions to the ACCC on this important matter.”
The ACCC will make a recommendation to Government by mid-2018 following its investigation and consultation.
Further information including quad bikes safety tips is available at www.productsafety.gov.au.
Office of Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash: (02) 6277 7320
David De Garis 0427 019 692;
Andrew Hudgson 0429 500 913
Office of the Hon Michael McCormack MP: Whil Prendergast 0427 672 815