Search

Farming sector should be embarrassed by poor safety record, says sector chief

PUBLISHED: 11:22 21 June 2019 | UPDATED: 11:22 21 June 2019

As series of farm health and safety workshops are set to take place across East Anglia pre-harvest  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

As series of farm health and safety workshops are set to take place across East Anglia pre-harvest Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

The agricultural industry should be "embarrassed" about its health and safety record, a national farmers' leader said as he prepared to visit Suffolk to highlight the issue.

NFU vice president Stuart Roberts who will be in Suffolk at the end of June for a health and safety workshop  Picture: SARAH CHAMBERSNFU vice president Stuart Roberts who will be in Suffolk at the end of June for a health and safety workshop Picture: SARAH CHAMBERS

National Farmers' Union (NFU) vice president Stuart Roberts will be at the first of a series of five free health and safety workshops taking place across the region in the run-up to harvest.

His appearance at Symonds Farm, near Bury St Edmunds, on June 27, is part of an industry-wide drive to improve agriculture's poor record on fatalities and serious injuries.

MORE - Pioneering Stowmarket farmer seeks to cut chemicals on crops as trials reach second year

"The health and safety record of agriculture is something the industry should be embarrassed about," he said.

"However, I am seeing signs that farm businesses are starting to respond to this issue in a positive way.

"Initiatives such as these farm safety workshops are starting to have a positive effect in changing the culture of the industry and I would urge farmers and farm workers to take time to attend.

You may also want to watch:

"Together, we can help to drive safety forward, reducing the risk of accidents and making our industry the safest it can be."

The events, open to members and their staff, will feature short presentations on key topics including trailer safety, workplace transport, vehicle speeds, weights and licence requirements.

UK Power Networks will focus on safety around power lines and there will be a presentation by the fire service on fire and arson prevention.

Figures from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show there were 33 farming-related deaths last year. Statistically, agriculture is the most dangerous industry, with 8.44 deaths per 100,000 employed, compared with an all-industry average of 0.45 deaths per 100,000.

NFU East Anglia county network manager Adam Scott said: "Everyone in farming will know of someone who has been killed, or seriously injured, in an agricultural accident and the impact this has on their business but, more importantly, on their family, staff and friends.

"Farmers are extremely busy ahead of harvest, but a few hours spent at one of these workshops will be time well spent. It could, literally, be a life-saver."

Each event is 9am for 9.30am and will finish at about 1pm. Booking is essential. Contact meetingsea@nfu.org.uk or 01638 672100.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the East Anglian Daily Times

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists