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Reducing the Risks of Farming

A new partnership has been launched that aims to improve safety on Scotland’s farms and crofts and reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries that occur.

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), almost 80 men, women and children have died and many more have been seriously injured as a result of farming activities. This brings a catalogue of heartbreak and misery to numerous Scottish families and rural communities each year.

The statistics for the last decade show that 13 people have been killed on Scottish farms by falls when working at heights; nine people have been killed in incidents involving livestock; 26 people have been killed when their vehicles have overturned or they have been struck by a moving vehicle and six people have been killed when they came into contact with working machinery or equipment.

The Farm Safety Scotland Partnership, which includes the NFU Scotland, NFU Mutual, HSE and Scottish Government, has produced a new campaign leaflet “Working Together to Save Lives”.  It outlines the four most common dangers on farms – Falls, Animals, Transport and Equipment – and urges farmers not to leave their safety to FATE.

“As the insurer of the majority of Scottish farms, we are all too aware of the dreadful impact that deaths and serious injuries have on farming families and are determined to do everything we can to help prevent accidents in the future,” explained Martin Malone, NFU Mutual Scotland Manager. “The establishment of the Scotland Farm Safety Partnership provides a focus for organisations involved in agriculture to work together and use their combined skills and experience to produce a less dangerous working environment.”

“Whilst other industries – including construction – have seen accidents fall sharply in recent years, the number of people killed and injured on our farms has remained high and farming is now the most dangerous occupation in GB,” he added.

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