Farming and agriculture has the worst accident rate of any industrial sector in the UK and across the world. Hundreds of workers are killed or seriously injured every year.
Approximately 1.5% of the working population are employed in the farming and agriculture sector, yet the industry accounts for up to 20% of annual workplace fatalities, an average of between 40 to 50 deaths.
Over the past ten years there have been 436 people killed in the farming and agricultural sector. Of those killed, 140 workers were employed, 245 were self employed, 51 were members of the public and 19 were children under the age of 16.
The main causes of death in this sector include:
• Transport related accidents
• Falls from height
• Moving or falling objects
Safety and Health Awareness Day
Given the large amount of deaths and injuries in this sector, steps are being taken to try and make the industry safer.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have organised a Safety and Health Awareness Day in East Yorkshire on the 14th October. The day will focus on several main risk factors within the sector that lead to accidents, in a bid to provide workers with the necessary knowledge to make their working environment a safer place.
Tim Johnson, HSE Inspector who is leading the safety event said: "Many farmers are self-employed or run small businesses so we want to make sure they’re not putting themselves, family and visitors, as well as their livelihoods, at risk with poor health and safety.
"We have farmers taking sessions and they are familiar with the issues and challenges facing their colleagues today. We’ll be offering expert, simple tips targeted at key risks that won’t cost a lot to put into practice and could even help to boost productivity. The events are also an opportunity to catch up with other local farmers and share industry knowledge.
"It’s an alarming statistic that farmers are ten times more likely than most workers to be killed while at work. I’d encourage them to give up half a day of their time to come along to the event."
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