On a fine and cool day in June, at the picturesque research farm of Armidale Research Centre (ARC), a group of six ARC staff undertook advanced quad bike safety training.
Veterinarians Sarah Bailey and Brendan Sharpe, scientists Jocelyn Baker and Lucy Pointing, farm manager Karl Potts and ARC assistant Amanda Saunders were coached in the "do's and don't's" of paddock riding, safety on quad bikes, and understanding the potential dangers of using quad bikes.
The ARC team often use quad bikes during their work; the Cluny Rd research farm facility is constructed to meet research requirements with dual fencing, separated paddocks with an accessible central holding area for handling animals, and an indoor holding area if needed. As well, staff often operate on other farms, conducting research in co-operation with the grazier, and so conditions can be more variable. They can be working with any species - sheep, cattle, horses, goats - so it is imperative they pay attention to their own safety at all times.
Under the watchful eye of trainer Darren Hawkins from Tocal College, the team learned how to go up and downhill safely, how to negotiate obstacles, and what to do if the bike tips over. Jocelyn commented: "We all learned a lot from the course about riding quads, what they are capable of doing, and the danger they are capable of creating."
Invetus is committed to the safety of its staff in all their endeavours, and puts a strong emphasis on personal safety.
About Tocal College
Tocal College, CB Alexander Campus is situated i the picturesque Hunter Valley about 180km north of Sydney. It provides a unique blend of agricultural training and practical experience for school leavers and other people who may be interested in rewarding careers in agriculture.