Agriculture has long been one of the most dangerous industries to work in. 2014 figures from the Health & Safety Authority showed an 87 per cent increase in fatalities with 30 people killed compared to 16 the year before.
Furthermore, the agricultural sector represented 55 per cent of all work related deaths in 2014 and it was the fifth consecutive year that the sector recorded the highest number of fatalities. Martin O’Halloran, CEO of the Health & Safety Authority commented, “The number of fatal accidents that occurred on farms last year was the highest in over 20 years. In May of 2014 there were five people killed.”
Now a supplier of Health & Safety Labelling products has warned farmers not to forget the risks associated with electricity, from pylons in fields to electrical tools and equipment.
Will Best, of PAT Labels Online, says, “There are many electrical risks which face farmers and agricultural workers. The reliance on both portable and fixed electrical equipment in often cluttered outbuildings & barns means that up to date and regular maintenance & testing is essential.
“With the increase in the size of agricultural machinery, strikes with overhead power lines are also a very real risk to workers. The safest practice would be to avoid overhead power lines altogether, however if you have to work near them, make sure everyone working is fully aware of their whereabouts.”