Quad rating battle looms
THE bid to establish a new safety-rating system for quad bikes is set to pit farmers, doctors and academics against manufacturers.
Federal Employment Minister Michaelia Cash has announced the formation of a taskforce to investigate a safety rating system for quad bikes as well as design standards.
The University of NSW’s transport and road safety department has already developed a five-star safety rating that puts quad bikes and sideby-side vehicles in the same rating category.
The result of the university’s system is that most quad bikes are given a much lower safety rating than side-by-side vehicles.
The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries won’t accept that conclusion.
FCAI quad-bike spokesman Mark Collins said manufacturers would not accept ranking quad bikes against side-by-side vehicles.
Mr Collins said the university’s scheme was not evidence-based.
He said the industry body was not opposed to a safety star-rating system as long as quad bikes and side-by-side vehicles were ranked in separate categories.
“We’d support a star-rating system if it was like NCAP [new car assessment program] that was evidenced-based,” he said.
The National Farmers Federation and Rural Doctors Association of Australia have already come out in support of the university’s star-rating system for quad bikes and sideby-sides.
Federal Small Business Minister Michael McCormack said the taskforce would develop a standard that might include education materials and issues such as the power, weight and rollover risk of the vehicles.
The national taskforce will be led by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
For more information on the safety taskforce and to make a submissions visit www. productsafety.gov.au.