Teen dies and brother hurt after tractor overturns

Tractor and trailer being taken from scene

A 14-year-old boy died when the farm machinery on which he and his brother were travelling overturned into water in Carlow.

According to gardaí, the tractor and trailer rolled into a water-filled ditch during the incident, which happened at approximately 10.30am in a beet field on a farmer’s property a short distance from the village of Ballon.

The boy, named locally as Donal English Hayden, and his brother, who is 15, were rushed to St Luke’s Hospital in Kilkenny.

However, while the older boy was not seriously injured, it was confirmed at around 6pm yesterday that Donal had succumbed to his injuries.

Both gardaí and the Health and Safety Authority attended the scene and have launched separate investigations into the circumstances surrounding the incident.

Donal is a member of a large family who are well known in the area. His death has once again raised the issue of safety in agricultural settings.

There were 30 fatalities in farming and tractor-related accidents in 2014. There have been at least nine so far this year.

At the start of the summer, the Health and Safety Authority appealed to schools to make children aware of the dangers of farms.

At that point, it said farm accidents had claimed the lives of 23 children in the last decade and that they remain the only workplace where children continue to die.

The Health and Safety Authority said the top risks to children on farms in the summer period were: Tractors, machinery and other farm vehicles; travelling on farm vehicles; playing where there was work activity on the farm; unsupervised access to farm animals; and playing near slurry pits or being around slurry agitation activity.


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