FBD boss highlights farm safety, as fatalities ‘head towards record levels’

The importance of farm safety was highlighted recently by the CEO of FBD, Fiona Muldoon, as farm fatalities “head towards record levels” in 2017.

Muldoon was speaking at the results ceremony of the Teagasc/FBD Student of the Year award; an event which FBD has supported for over 30 years.

Addressing the congregation of young farmers, Muldoon urged everybody to give a special priority to farm safety as they go about their daily routine.

“Irish farmers hold a record, a record that I – as an observer in an insurance company – would very much like to see them relinquish.

We have had 12 farm fatalities so far this year, which is heading towards record levels. Irish farms hold the record for the most injuries in workplace accidents.

“At FBD, we see those accidents in monetary terms. The awful consequences of those injuries go well beyond any monetary (value).

“I can’t be at a gathering of young people without reminding you all that farm safety and putting work practice safety first, as you go about your daily jobs, should always be something that you strive for,” she said.

A recent report published by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) revealed that farming is the occupation with the highest risk of fatalities in the country; with a rate nearly 10 times the average.

The report drew on a survey, of over 800 farmers, which was commissioned by the Health and Safety Authority (HSA); all of the survey participants were reportedly male, self-employed and had no regular-paid employees.

Student of the Year Awards

Meanwhile, Muldoon also congratulated all of the 12 finalists who had been nominated for awards for their achievements.

“Irish agriculture needs bright, able, young people more than ever – those that are open to change; those that question, challenge and develop both themselves and the industry.

This is how we will bring the Irish agri-sector to an even more successful position on the highly-competitive global stage.

A 26-year-old dairy farmer from Co. Waterford, Shane Fitzgerald, took home the overall prize from the awards.

He was presented with the Student of the Year Award by the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed; the Director of Teagasc, Prof. Gerry Boyle; and the CEO of FBD, Fiona Muldoon.