The Health and Safety Authority is to carry out 500 farm inspections during Farm Safety Fortnight, which is taking place this and next week (April 13-24).

For Farm Safety Fortnight, the inspections will see inspectors from the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) visit farms around the country and look at specific issues including tractor handbrakes and PTO covers.

According to the HSA, it has set the target of 500 inspections for the fortnight. Inspectors, when they visit farms, will be focusing on:

  • Tractor maintenance including ensuring serviceable handbrake;
  • Provision of animal handling facilities including facilities for calving;
  • Provision of a safe and secure play area for children; and,
  • Adequate guarding of PTOs.

To coincide with Farm Safety Fortnight, the HSA has released a number of videos highlighting the need for farm safety. In one, former IFA President John Dillon talks about how he himself, while IFA President, was seriously injured when involved in a quad bike accident.

I was sure that was it. Luckily my brother stopped the tractor and heard moaning

In another, Kevin McEnteggart tells how as a child he almost died when he tried to jump over an open slat into a slurry tank.

This year two people have died in farm accidents while last year 30 people lost their lives on Irish farms.