The Association of Farm & Forestry Contractors in Ireland (FCI) has issued a statement about the growing problem of mainly younger drivers in contracting fleets who are breaking the law, and putting lives at risk, by using smartphones while driving tractors.

“Using smartphones to create videos is now a significant management issue for many contractors during silage season 2020,” said the Association of Farm & Forestry Contractors in Ireland (FCI). “We are aware of significant numbers of videos being posted to various social media outlets which seem to portray contractor operations during silage harvesting as some form of entertainment. This behaviour undermines the seriousness and dangers associated with using high-output modern machinery in farm contracting operations. Silage harvesting is a serious business. It is one that demands the full concentration of the drivers at all times.”

“We are urging all contractors to immediately sack any drivers found to be using their smartphones for recording and publishing work-related videos to social media outlets as they are endangering themselves, other road users and ultimately putting the future of the contracting business at huge risk, as well as adding significantly to insurance claims.”

“There are a number of aspects to the problem. Some videos are merely portraying good operations, while others are showing lack of driving skills and safety awareness, while others are clearly highly dangerous and tempting fate in an absurd way.”

“All are dangerous. FCI recommends that drivers who behave in this way should be sacked from the contractor’s team with immediate effect.”

New technology options are coming available to block the use of smartphones within cabs. FCI recommends the use of cab signal blocking solution called Truce Software.