Today, the fourth day of Farm Safety Week, the focus is on keeping children safe on the farm.
Farms can be family homes as well as workplaces, with children often present. Tragically, between 2007 and 2016, in Ireland, 23 children lost their lives due to farm accidents.
According to Caroline Farrell, IFA Farm Family Chairperson: “Summer is a particularly dangerous time for children on farms as they’re off school and are about more when work activity is running at a very high level – often with contractors on-site operating potentially dangerous vehicles and machinery.
“A farm can be a magical place for children, where independence and responsibility are fostered and family relationships are strengthened, but it can also be a dangerous place where the unthinkable can happen in a matter of seconds. Growing up on a farm brings both challenges and blessings. It builds character and a solid work ethic and creates an attitude of optimism, but it also has its dangers, which is why it is so important to educate children on safety and risks from an early age.”
Agri Aware Chairman Richard Richard Moeran said, “It is vital that every possible step is taken to reduce the number of fatalities that happen each year on Irish farms, the first step is educating people, especially children. If we can instil in their minds, from an early age, an awareness of the dangers on the farm, and help them to form good farm safety habits, that lesson will be with them for a lifetime.”
Agri Aware the agri-food educational body has a number of resources focusing on farm safety including the “Once Upon a Farm” farm safety awareness video. For more information visit www.agriaware.ie
For more information on Farm Safety Week UK & Ireland visit www.ifa.ie/farm-safety or follow @IFAmedia on Twitter using the hashtag #FarmSafetyWeek