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Fine over quad bike death

Media Release

11 March 2014

Fine over quad bike death

Share-milking company Holden Farms Limited has been fined $28,125 and ordered to pay reparations of $75,000 after a farm hand died last year when the quad bike he was riding rolled on top of him.

Holden Farms pleaded guilty in the Tokoroa District Court to one charge under the Health and Safety in Employment Act of failing to take all practicable steps to ensure the safety of Gary Tantrum.

Mr Tantrum died one year ago tomorrow while he was mustering cattle on a farm at Mangakino in Waikato. His quad bike rolled while he was riding up a steep slope. It fell on top of him, crushing him causing fatal injuries.

WorkSafe’s chief investigator, Keith Stewart, said Holden Farms could have done more to protect Mr Tantrum.

“The area he was riding in had been identified as a hazard, but the company had not taken any action to tell its workers not to ride quad bikes there, or in other hazardous areas.

“The quad bike was also carrying a sprayer with 20 litres of liquid in. That would have affected its stability – and could also have restricted the ‘active riding’ required for quad bikes.

“There is no evidence the sprayer caused the accident, but it was a hazard that should have been identified and managed.

“Quad bikes are inherently dangerous. Every year an average of 850 people are injured while riding them on farms. Everyone needs to do their bit to ensure they are used as safely as possible,” says Keith Stewart.

[Ends]

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