The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) has advised farmers not to venture outdoors if at all possible during the weather alert during Storm Emma.

“It is hoped that farmers have prepared adequately, brought in stock or put out fodder and will not have to go out during the red alert,” HSA chief inspector Pat Griffin told the Irish Farmers Journal.

“We would advise farmers not to go out to fields during the red alert.

“If travelling any distance to nearby fields, farmers should wear boots with good grips, a hi-vis jacket and carry a fully charged mobile phone and a torch.”

Underfoot conditions

Farmers should, where possible, clear pathways to critical machinery and sheds to improve underfoot conditions, which will minimise risk of slips and falls.

Even if just going out to feed animals in sheds or to carry out milking, they should carry a fully charged mobile and tell someone their estimated time of return.


“While it would be very difficult for the emergency services to respond they should not hesitate to dial 999 or 112 for assistance if absolutely necessary,” Griffin advised.

“It is critical that you know your Eircode number and give clear information to the emergency services.”

Management of livestock and machinery

  • Darren Carty says snow drifts and wind chill pose the greatest risk to ewes and lambs.
  • Michael Collins on how to keep your tractor and farm equipment moving in the big freeze.
  • William Conlon writes about how to deal with frozen pipes.
  • Aidan Brennan says farmers should consider milking cows just once a day.
  • Adam Woods writes about temporary shelters and ad-lib feeding during the severe weather.
  • Read more

    ‘The biggest asset on any farm is the farmer’ – IFA president

    In pictures: how farmers are dealing with the weather

    Storm Emma: list of factories, marts and events cancelled

    Storm Emma: co-ops to close and milk collections disrupted

    More than 200 people killed in farm accidents

    2,000 farm inspections this year – HSA