Families asked to identify risks as farm fatalities rise 70%

IFA president Eddie Downey

Farm families countrywide have been asked to set time aside today to think about health and safety.

The plea by the Irish Farmers’ Association follows the loss of 14 lives in farming related accidents so far in 2014. That’s a 70% increase on this time last year.

IFA said its ‘Think Farm Safety Day’ is an opportunity for farm families to identify potential danger areas and consider ways to reduce risks.

This review and assessment will not only reduce the risks to farmers, their families, employees and farm visitors, but will also ensure they are complying with Health and Safety legislation.

IFA president Eddie Downey said farming is a high-risk occupation, but accidents and injuries can be prevented by taking time and working safely.

“Being tired, distracted and stressed is often a reality on busy farms and every effort must be made to avoid shortcuts,” he said.

IFA farm family committee leader Maura Canning said the ‘Think Farm Safety Day’ is about focusing busy minds and making sure the whole family is alert to the risks that exist on farms.

“We all know that farms are dangerous workplaces, but when working long hours in difficult conditions, that awareness can slip to the back of the mind,” she said.

The IFA has launched a farm safety section on its website, providing safety videos, booklets, links, and information. This will complement initiatives including messages in the IFA calendar, text alerts to members, and regular updates.


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