Safety day teaches farmers vital survival skills

18 July 2022

Group of people standing in front of farm machinery

NFU Yeovil has run a very successful farm safety day, with more than 40 people coming along to hear presentations by both the Farm Safety Foundation and NFU Mutual’s Risk Management Services team.

Redlynch Agricultural Engineering provided farm machinery to be used in accident scenario demonstrations, when farmers were asked to identify potential hazards and how to stay safe. There was also discussion on how to work with livestock safely and using the correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) during certain tasks.

The day went well and the team had some excellent feedback.

Engage with all ages

Stephanie Berkeley, manager of the Farm Safety Foundation, said: “The South West has a proud heritage of farming however, the industry continues to have the poorest safety record of any occupation in the UK.

“The main causes of fatal farm incidents have not changed during the past 60 years despite legislation and an increased awareness of the importance of working safely, so we need to engage with farmers of all ages to challenge and change attitudes and
make our farms safer places to work.

“More than half the fatal injuries that occurred last year in the South West were to workers over the age of 60. The average age of a UK farmer is 59, so engaging with this important audience is key to making a real difference.

“Our research shows that the next generation of farmers have a better attitude to risk-taking and are driving better safety behaviours.”

Proactive approach

Yeovil group secretary Mathew Latchford said: “Fatalities and life changing injuries can have devastating consequences, not just for victims, but their families and colleagues. Basic safety precautions can afford greater protection, which makes it even more heart breaking when tragedies happen.

“We are determined to take a proactive approach and play a leading role in this important workplace agenda, using events like these to better equip farmers, particularly those of an older generation, with the knowledge and skills they need to stay safe.”

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