Statistically, farming is Ireland’s most dangerous occupation. Since January 2014, 46 people, including seven children, have lost their lives on Irish farms. Of the 55 workplace fatalities in 2014, just under a quarter occurred in the Cork and Kerry region with almost 60% of these fatalities being farm related.
Fatalities are only one tragic aspect of the devastation caused by farm accidents – according to a Teagasc farm safety survey, 2,000 injuries also occur on Irish farms each year. The vast majority of these injuries, 75%, are associated with tractors and machinery, trips and falls, and livestock.
The National Irish Safety Organisation is hosting a nationwide workshop series entitled Farm Safety – Changing Attitudes. The workshops will commence in Fels Point Hotel in Tralee on 30 November, followed by dates in Athenry, Monaghan, Westport and Tullamore.
The aim of the Farm Safety – Changing Attitudes workshop series is to raise farm safety awareness among as many in the farming community as possible and help reduce the number of fatalities and injuries on Irish farms.
The panel of speakers includes John McNamara, Teagasc; Ciarán Roche, FBD; Professor Michael J. Hynes, NUI Galway; Pat Griffin and John Kennedy from the Health and Safety Authority, who will speak at alternating venues, and others to be confirmed.
The workshops will cover a wide range of farm safety issues including spraying regulations, chemicals safety, risk assessments and preparing a safety statement, insurance, fire safety and working from height safety.