Investigation launched after fatal quad bike accident

A truck removes a quad bike from a farm when a 10-year-old boy died today. Photo / APNZ
A truck removes a quad bike from a farm when a 10-year-old boy died today. Photo / APNZ

At least three separate investigations are underway after a 10-year-old boy was killed in a quad bike accident near in Wairarapa this morning.

Police said the incident occurred about 1km from the farm gate, on the property about 13km south of Featherston.

An ambulance and hearse were seen leaving the farm soon after midday.

Police vehicles were also coming and going during the day, along with people arriving to provide support to the family.

A tow truck arrived in the early afternoon and left a short time later loaded with a quad bike.

"CPR was performed at the scene, but sadly the boy was deceased,'' Wairarapa acting Senior Sergeant Rob Rackliff said.

"Enquiries so far indicate that the boy had gone out on the quad bike and was found by his father a short time later.''

The accident was the third quad bike fatality this year, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

Neighbour John Pearce said the incident was "absolutely horrifying and tragic'', but he did not want to see any "recriminations about rural children''.

"These things happen in all walks of life.

"Many years ago people rode horses, and people fell off horses and died as well.''

Police have launched an investigation into the death and also referred the matter to the coroner.

A Labour Department spokesman confirmed tonight it had began making "preliminary enquiries'' into the accident.

A push by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment was launched in September to coincide with the spring season, to reinforce safety messages to reduce quad bike injuries and fatalities.

Typically, five people die and 850 are injured each year in accidents involving quad bikes on farms, Department of Labour figures show.

While coroners regularly make recommendations about the use of quad bikes, they don't have the power to enforce that they are followed.

- APNZ

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