Risk of a fatal farm accident increases by 40% in March

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health’s (IOSH) Ireland branch is holding a safety event ‘Farming and Driving in the West of Ireland’ on Tuesday, March 10, in Claregalway, Co. Galway.

Teagasc says that March is a high farm accident month when, on average, the risk of a fatal accidents on farms increases by 40% and it attributes this with a high farming workload.

The event organised by the IOSH will focus on farm safety and related vehicle driving with an emphasis on agricultural vehicle safety – including on public roads.

Liam Howe, the chairman of the IOSH Ireland, will be the chair of the event.  John Kennedy an inspector with the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) will be a speaker at the event and he will be focusing on tackling the risks arising from farm animals and slurry management.

Deirdre Sinnott McFeat, also of the HSA, will also be speaking at Tuesday’s event where she will be discussing ‘driving for work – a risky business’. Paul Duffy Senior Assistant Chief Fire Officer with Galway Fire & Rescue will be speaking about the experiences of those working in rescue services at the event.

Aine English, chair of the IOSH Ireland Branch’s Rural Industries section, said that there will be something for everybody at the event.

“It is a busy time in agriculture at the moment, there is calving, lambing and animals that need assistance,”she said.

According to English, fatigue management will be a topic at the event so that “people aren’t pushing themselves to the pin of their collar”.

She also said that the event aims to highlight the risks associated with driving and how we have to be vigilant within remit of the weather conditions.

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