A Victorian farmer has invented an automated alert system to help reduce quad bike fatalities.
Farmer, Mark Gubbins’ nephew was killed in a quad bike incident, and his death prompted him to invent the device.
“He was a young 12-year-old.. that went off to run his dogs and didn’t come home,” Mr. Gubbins told ABC.
“If his parents could’ve been alerted then maybe they would’ve got there quicker and maybe he would’ve been saved.”
The device works by sending text messages to a list of pre-programmed numbers with information about when and where a quad bike has tipped or rolled.
“Those texts will go out from a rollover incident within a minute,” he said.
“It will also give the longitude and latitude position of where that device is right then, and you can load a map up and have a look at exactly where it is.”
Mr. Gubbins says the device could help reduce the risk of serious injury and death along with response times.
“With one minute, help is on the way and that makes a big difference,” he said.
“I mean 20 minutes with my nephew turned into a minute; that’s probably life and death.”
Mr. Gubbins partnered with Austracker, a Geelong-based retailer to release the product commercially.
The device can be availed at $700, plus $320 subscription fee.
“I want to make it as cheap as can be, so if there was a commission involved they can give the commission back to the person that buys it,” said Mr. Gubbins.
“We’ll just get it on some bikes, get people protected.
“I do well out of farming, I don’t need to have a little side effort of that.”
Quad bike related incidents are the leading cause of death and serious injury on Australian farms, with more than 200 Australians killed in quad bike incidents since 2001. The majority of injuries and deaths happen when quad bikes roll over.