National Farm Safety Week aims to raise awareness of farm safety issues in rural communities across Australia.
In it’s 20th year and running from July 17-21, Farm Safety Week has become an opportunity for Farmsafe Australia to address issues that have a national focus, and highlight the importance of business and industry working together to increase the well-being of Australian farmers.
They hope to achieve this through improved attention to health and safety, in line with the Farmsafe goal.
The theme for this year’s Farm Safety Week is ‘Creating a resilient, safe and healthy ag community’.
It seeks to focus on the practical issues that farmers can take to improve safety for themselves, their workers, family members and farm visitors.
This in turn leads to better productivity and improved returns for the farm business following the mantra – ‘safety doesn’t cost, it pays’.
Practical steps that farmers can take to have safety as a core value include:
- Having a safety plan in place that identifies potential hazards and taking specific actions to fix them;
- Always being on the look-out for new hazards and fixing these as soon as possible once identified;
- Making sure everyone that works on the farm understands and uses the safety procedures put in place;
- Setting clear safety procedures for risky work;
- Having an emergency plan in place in case there are any incidents.
Over the last 25 years, there has been a significant reduction in farm fatalities from a yearly average of 146 deaths to 63 in 2016.
In 2016, tractors, farm machinery and quad bikes were the leading causes of non-intentional farm injury death.
This year alone to March 31, there have already been 18 tragic deaths on-farm, with tractors (3), quads (6) and water storage (3) featuring.
“In 2016 quad bikes were one of the leading causes of deaths and injuries overall,” Farmsafe Australia Chairman, Charles Armstrong said.
“We have developed a number of resources to help reduce the risks associated with farm vehicles, including a Quad Safety Guide for farmers.”
- Visit: www.farmsafe.org.au.