Don’t become a farming fatality statistic

THE FUW – one of 13 organisations signed up to the On-Farm Health & Safety Charter for Wales – joined forces with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and St John Cymru Wales to get the health and safety message across to farmers during Royal Welsh Show. The union’s education and training committee chairman Alun Edwards said: “Agriculture represents about 1.4 per cent of the workforce across the UK but astonishingly accounts for up to 20 per cent of all reported work-related fatalities in Great Britain. “Even though we still have one of the lowest rates of workplace deaths in Europe, one death is still one too many and we don’t want to see our farmers become a farming fatality statistic.” Joining the FUW at its ringside pavilion was HSE’s head of agriculture Rick Brunt who said: “The work of the Wales Farm Safety Partnership is a vital component in helping the farming industry improve its poor safety record. “The risks on farms are all wellknown and readily managed, but all too often farmers and farm workers put themselves in situations where one slip can have life changing or even fatal consequences. “We are pleased to support the partnership, and the member organisations, in their activities to raise awareness of these issues.” Visitors to the pavilion were able to chat with St John Cymru Wales Cadet of the Year 2015, 16- year-old Rhiannon Bartlett, who shares the organisation’s vision of a first aider on every street. She said: “Agriculture is a major industry in Wales and St John understands the dangers involved and the fact that it is statistically the most dangerous work place in the UK.” Miss Bartlett is a farmer’s daughter, living on a hill farm in Machen where she is part of the third generation working the land and looking after the livestock there. “This makes her ideally placed to take a leading role in publicising in the First Aid for Farmers campaign. I am passionate about improving the safety for farmers as they work and I’m looking to raise first aid awareness of famers and in particular young farmers. First aid training will give farming families the skills they need to cope with potentially life-threatening situations.”

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