How to load and unload a quad bike for transport
WorkSafe New Zealand is committed to helping reduce the risk of injuries and fatalities resulting from quad bike hazards. Use the following steps to manage the risks in loading and unloading your quad bike.
Preparing to load or unload a quad bike
- Remove any loose items from the quad bike or make sure they are properly secured before loading. Also empty spray tanks before loading where possible.
- Select a site that is flat and free from obstacles.
- Use a loading bank, platform or ramps of good quality and adequate strength.
- If loading or unloading a trailer, check tow bar and coupling size are compatible.
- Check the trailer is stable and secure so there are no unexpected movements (eg ensure the hand brake is on).
- only a competent rider should ride a quad bike on or off a trailer or ute.
Loading or unloading the quad bike
- Remember to always wear a helmet.
- Make sure the vehicle towing the trailer or being used to transport the quad bike is turned off, and the handbrake applied.
- If ramps are used for loading and unloading, secure them to the trailer to prevent movement.
- Read the operators manual to identify the maximum safe slope for loading and unloading.
- The higher the tray on the transport vehicle or trailer, the longer the ramps need to be.
- Check ramp carrying capacity. The weight should be marked on each ramp. For example: If the safe working load for each ramp is 175 kg, that’s a total load capacity of 350 kg.
- Check the quad bike is lined up with the ramps before riding the bike up or backing the bike off the trailer or ute.
- Ensure the quad bike is in 4WD, if available.
- Box-type trailers may be lower than other options and therefore safer to use. Some trailers have a winch to pull loads on, if your trailer has a winch consider using this before choosing to ride the quad up and onto a trailer.
Securing the quad bike
- Make sure the quad bike is positioned so the load is centred on the trailer or ute. Bear in mind what else needs to be loaded onto the trailer, the balance of the trailer on the tow bar and the carrying capacities.
- Make sure the quad bike’s park brake is on.
- Remove the key.
- Secure the quad bike front and back with ropes, or rated straps with ratchet tie downs in good condition.
- Use crossover ties if you are travelling a long distance or over uneven terrain.
- Be aware of suspension movement when securing your quad bike as ties can easily become loose when suspension compresses during transport.
- Secure other objects around the quad bike to avoid damage from shifting loads.
- Check the load regularly during transportation, particularly on rough terrain.
Always be aware of your load height, especially when travelling under low clearance bridges or into sheds and garages.
Note: This material has been prepared using the best information available at the time of publication. Information may change over time and it may be necessary for you to obtain an update. This material is also only intended to provide general advice and does not constitute legal advice. You should make your own judgement about action you may need to take to ensure you have complied with your workplace health and safety obligations under the law.
 Health and Safety at Work Act 2015.