It is heartening to hear of farmers taking action themselves to improve farm safety, for example the West Offaly Group who are featured in this Focus. However, more farmers need to take action on safety. Some have learned from a bad experience, and we must all sit up and listen to what they have to say, thankful they are sharing their experience.
Workload, time pressure and bad decision-making all lead to accidents. Thankfully, in general, 2019 has been a good weather year so far, and this means less rushing and racing when there is hay to be brought in or straw to be stacked. All around the country there are haybarns full, silage pits full to overflowing, and plenty of round bales on farm.
With the exceptional harvest comes problems for storage. Farms at different stages of development must over time improve facilities and equipment.
As a rule, agricultural contractors have better equipment, the experience and the staff to do the job properly at this time of the year.
Farmers should use these services if available and if they can.
While short-term there may be increased cost, if you put a value on your time and the fact it de-risks your business, then it can be money very well spent.
Organising and planning takes time but is hugely valuable and, while we perceive time at the kitchen table as downtime, in fact it can be some of the most useful and productive time you will spend. All farmers are now operating valuable businesses and as boss of that business you owe it to your family and friends to farm safely and reduce the risk of becoming a statistic which nobody wants.
‘No one will ever give out to you for being too careful’
Make one change to improve farm safety
Discussion Groups leading the safety way
Farm Accidents on the rise nationally