Despite the great advancements in modern agriculture, farming remains a labour-intensive and sometimes dangerous occupation. Ireland's farmers work in harsh weather conditions, handle dangerous chemicals and materials, and operate large machinery and equipment.
2010 was one of the worst years for farm accidents and fatalities in recent history. The Health and Safety Authority figures show that 25 people died on farms in 2010. The main causes of death were machinery, tree felling, livestock and falling from heights. Whilst in 2011, there were 22 fatalities.
The IFA Think Safety Farm Safely campaign aims to encourage individual farmers and their families to maintain the highest safety standards on their farms, and thereby reduce the number of injuries and deaths.
It is an educational, training and promotional campaign that intends to work together with other agencies and organisations to increase farmers' awareness of best practice in farm safety and strengthen farmers' commitment to health and safety, by proactively addressing unsafe practices on the farm.
There is a legal requirement on all farmers, just like any other employer, to provide a safe place of work as far as is practical. The law is contained in the Safety, Health & Welfare at Work Act 2005 backed by regulation & code of practice to improve farm safety.
A Safety Statement or Risk Assessment document identifies the key dangers that may cause death or serious injury.