New farm safety campaign goes from strength to strength

More agricultural businesses are being encouraged to back the Farm Safety Partnership that aims to reduce the number of on-farm deaths and injuries.

Just over a year since the launch of the Partnership at the Grasslands and Muck event in May 2011, 25 organisations have now signed up to the Farm Safety Charter document. The work of the Partnership has also gained support from Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB) and St John Ambulance.

NFU head of policy services Andrew Clark said: “One positive step to try and make a real difference was the launch of the Farm Safety Partnership, designed to raise awareness of the dangers faced when working in the agricultural sector and to provide practical advice, training and guidance on how farms can be made safer.

“Since the official launch the group has built up a bank of practical safety advice leaflets which cover areas like machinery, falls, children on farm and overhead power lines, as well as a variety of training courses available, which range from a vocational qualification course to applied training on safety and welfare in markets.

“Organisations involved in the Partnership have also been instrumental in increasing the profile of safety; we’ve had online web debates, seminars, practical training events, a strong safety presence at agricultural shows and articles in the farming press almost every week.

“Although 25 organisations are now members of the Partnership, we want to see more getting on board. It is vital we all continue these positive steps to make a real difference and do all we can to demonstrate that a good safety record is proof of a professional, modern industry.”

There will be a number of safety activities happening at this year’s Cereals event. Michelin will be highlighting the importance of selecting a competent and professional tyre dealer for all agricultural tyre fitting and maintenance. This is to help reduce the number of incidents where the incorrect fitting or use of tyres leads to serious accidents on the farm. Michelin has also reinforced its membership of the Partnership by launching the Michelin Certified Centre audit programme in the UK – recognising those tyre dealers which meet the highest safety and quality standards.

GrowHow is also actively involved and will distribute ‘Fertiliser Safety Packs’ from their stand at Cereals and will have a free poster available from their website www.growhow.co.uk.

“Further initiatives are planned during the autumn as next season’s product begins arriving on farm to highlight best practice in working with big bags and handling equipment”, said Clive Deeley, Business Advice Manager, GrowHow UK.

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