ESB advises agri students on powerline dangers

Most fatal farm electrical powerline accidents occur when loading or stacking bales of hay or straw, ESB Networks have warned.

ESB Networks public safety manger, Arthur Byrne, has advised UCD Agri students to ensure equipment keeps clear of powerlines. He also said portable grain augers are a particular risk due to their operating height.

“Cutting hedges and trees can be a high-risk activity, and there has unfortunately been one fatality recently,” Mr Byrne told 230 students at a practical day at the Lyons Estate research farm in Co Kildare.

“Often, people simply do not notice overhead electricity lines. Lines that run parallel to hedges or along the edge of forests blend into the scenery.”

The electricity talk by Mr Byrne and ESB colleague Emer Murphy was one of six 20-minute demos by ESB Networks, UCD and Teagasc experts. 

Tom Ryan of Teagasc spoke on chain saw operation; Barbara Murphy of UCD discussed equine safety; Bridget Lynch of UCD addressed slurry risks. John McNamara, Teagasc, on tractors with PTO. Aoife Osborne, FBD lecturer at UCD, gave a safe manual handling talk.


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