HSE farm inspection programme – dates and what to expect

23 June 2023

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The HSE will visit farms in the North West, East Midlands, East Anglia, the South West and Southern Wales this autumn and next spring. Find out more about the inspections and free training on offer.

The HSE is inspecting farms because risk in the farming workplace is often poorly managed. This unfortunately means that agriculture has persistently high death, injury and ill-health rates compared with other industries.

The workplace death rate in agriculture is six times higher than in construction. It is 21 times higher than the all industry average.

The main causes of death are:

  • Workplace transport
  • Falling objects
  • Falls from height
  • Machinery and maintenance on moving equipment
  • Livestock handling.

The precautions that need to be taken to avoid death in the workplace are well known, as are the solutions. Many of these are easy to carry out and very cost effective. For example, following Safe Stop every time a driver leaves the cab of a vehicle.

The HSE is offering a fixed number of free training places to farmers in the areas where they will be carrying out inspections.

Inspections – timeframe and locations

The HSE will begin its inspection visit timetable in October 2023 and complete it in April 2024.

Inspections will take place in the following areas:

  • Southern Wales
  • East Anglia
  • North West
  • South West
  • East Midlands

Preparing for inspection

HSE inspections will focus on the main causes of fatal accidents in the farm workplace. There are a number of ways you can refresh your understanding of best practice.

HSE guidance and resources

NFU guidance and resources

Training from Lantra

The HSE is offering a limited number of free training places to farmers in the areas where they will be carrying out inspections.

The training is being provided by Lantra and will be delivered remotely through an eLearning package. Places are limited and will be available on a first come, first served basis.

Farmers in the areas selected for inspection will be invited by letter from the beginning of July to take the training package. Early booking is recommended if you are contacted and offered access to the training course.

Farmers who secure a free place on the eLearning will have access from July/August 2023. On completion of the course, participants will receive a certificate confirming that the course has been taken and completed.

Training independent from inspections

The selection of farms for inspection is entirely independent of the eLearning offer. Whether or not a farmer undertakes the eLearning will not affect the probability of being inspected or not.

Farmers selected for inspection will be asked whether they have completed the eLearning to help the HSE determine whether the eLearning improves inspection outcomes or not. As stated above, the mere fact that training has been completed will not influence the probability of being inspected or not.

Additional training requirements

The HSE is only offering one free training place per farm. If you would like to access training for more people, we've agreed a discount with Lantra for NFU members across England and Wales, their families and employees.

More details are available on our web page: NFU members get discount on a new online farm safety course


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