Farm Safety Week

Monday July 20th 2020


Written by Local Democracy Reporter, Kirstie Topp

An annual campaign aimed at reducing the number of accidents on Britain’s farms has been launched.

National charity Farm Safety Foundation’s Farm Safety Week runs from Monday, July 20, to Friday, July 24.

The Health and Safety Executive Fatal Injuries in Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing for Great Britain 2019/2020 report states that 20 agriculture workers lost their lives over the past year, a decrease of 37.5 per cent on the previous years figure of 32.

Of those killed 20 were agricultural workers and one was a member of the public – a four-year-old child.

The biggest cause of these fatalities was farm transport and workers over the age of 55 were at risk of death following an incident.

Despite the drop in numbers this year, agriculture still has the highest rate of fatal injury of all the main industry sectors, around 18 times higher than the all-industry rate, accounting for around 20 per cent of worker fatalities.

Now in its eighth year, Farm Safety Week reminds farmers and farm workers to take safety seriously to reduce the number of life-changing and life-ending accidents on farms across the UK.

Head of Agriculture, Health & Safety Executive Adrian Hodkinson said: “Agriculture is a vitally important part of our economy but every year we report that agriculture has the poorest safety record of any occupation in the UK.

“It is a very sad fact that most of the deaths and life-changing injuries are completely avoidable and the causes well known.

“The precautions to prevent people being killed and/or really seriously injured on farms are usually straightforward. It is not acceptable that Agriculture continues to fail to manage risk in the workplace.

“We need everyone to play their part to change their own behaviours and do things the right way and challenge poor practices whenever they are seen.”

Farm Safety Week is supported by the Farm Safety Partnerships, the Health & Safety Executive, Health & Safety Executive for Northern Ireland and the Health & Safety Authority, Ireland.

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