The quad is a marvel of engineering that is designed for a single rider, and with four low pressure tyres and handlebar control, the all-terrain vehicle (ATV) is ideal for farm work or as a form of recreation. Contrary to popular belief, a quad cannot go anywhere and do everything, and like any other motorised vehicle, safety is a prime concern. If you are planning on getting into this exhilarating hobby, here are some essential safety tips to ensure you have an accident free experience.
- Head Protection – Quads are not normally fitted with roll bars, and even if they were, you would still need to wear a protective helmet. Any motorcycle helmet will do the job, and you might prefer an open, rather than full face helmet, which allows you a little more freedom. If your helmet is not the full face variety, you might want to consider wearing some goggles, as often you will pass through dense undergrowth and overhanging branches are a real hazard.
- Gloves – It is important to wear gloves for two reasons – firstly, gloves will offer your hands essential protection when riding through the undergrowth, and they will also keep your hands warm when riding in cold weather. If you are planning to get road legal quad bikes in the UK, the supplier would likely stock both helmets and gloves, so you can kit yourself out in a single shopping session.
- Clothing – It is not advised to ride a quad in shorts and a T-shirt, no matter how hot the weather is, as in the event you take a tumble, your skin will take the brunt of the friction, and like riding a motorcycle, you need to wear a jacket and long trousers that are thick enough to absorb the friction when coming in contact with the ground. For those who would like some further reading on quad riding safety, there are some informative websites that discuss all the information you need.
- Get Some Riding Tuition – The quad supplier would know of a place where you can get some instruction, and some dealers will even provide some free basic training when you purchase a vehicle. It is essential to stick to the manufacturer’s recommendations when quad riding, which would include keeping speed down to an acceptable level and not taking any passengers (unless the vehicle is designed for more than one person). Most accidents can be avoided if the rider has some basic training and does not deviate from the recommended practices.
- Ride With Caution – As with driving any motor vehicle, one must always be wary of possible dangers, and that includes avoiding steep inclines and keeping speeds down to a safe level. If you plan on taking your quad along a forest track, for example, it is always a good idea to first walk the route which will give you advanced warning of anything that might be a bit tricky.
Providing you are wearing the right clothing and have protective equipment, quad riding is a safe pastime, and by ensuring that the machine is always well-maintained, and you do not exceed the quad’s limitations, you should experience safe riding.