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Why Quad Bike Safety is a Wicked Problem: An Exploratory Study of Attitudes, Perceptions, and Occupational Use of Quad Bikes in Northern Queensland, Australia

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health. 20(1): 33-50. (doi: 10.13031/jash.20.10380) @2014
Authors:   Kristin E. McBain-Rigg, Richard C. Franklin, Genevieve C. McDonald, Sabina M. Knight
Keywords:   All-terrain vehicle, Australia, Beliefs, Decision making, Exploratory research, Farmers’s attitudes, Occupational health, Rural.

Quad bike safety represents the quintessential wicked problem. To address this wicked problem, this research explores the use of quad bikes in the northwestern region of outback Queensland, Australia, concentrating efforts on the pastoral industry. Focus groups and interviews were conducted with pastoralists, farmers, retailers, repairers, healthcare professionals, and regulators. The discussions revealed the diverse activities currently undertaken in the region’s pastoral enterprises while riding a quad bike, and that attitudes toward the purchase and use of quad bikes vary and may be influenced by retailers. Perceptions of risk and safety in the use of quad bikes in occupational settings also varied. The findings from this study provide insight into the decisions of local pastoralists and agriculturalists to use quad bikes in their workplaces, and attitudes toward safety and injury prevention relating to quad bike use in these industries in northwestern outback Queensland. This study is the first step toward understanding quad bike use in this region, with the goal of reducing injury and death, and will be used in policy and legislation development regarding the use and safety of quad bikes in Australia.

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