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39 people killed in agriculture in 2018-19, including seven members of the public

Workers in agriculture have been called to action after 39 people were killed in the sector in 2018-19.

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39 people killed in agriculture in 2018-19, including seven members of the public

The figure, six higher than the five-year average, showed seven members of the public were killed, including two children aged three.

 

It does not include the deaths of two children last week (July 8), aged 4 and 15, who were killed in separate farm-related incidents.

 

Health and Safety Executive (HSE) head of agriculture Andrew Turner said: “Agriculture is a critical part of our economy but every year we have to report that agriculture has the poorest safety record of any occupation in the UK.

 

“This is made even more tragic by the fact that the deaths and injuries are avoidable. The precautions to prevent people being killed and maimed on farmers are well known and can be easily applied.”


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Most incidents were a result of workers being struck by a moving vehicle (14), injured by an animal (9) or falling from height (7).

 

Nearly half of the workers killed were 60 or older.

 

Compared to the younger age group of 16-34, the fatal injury rate is more than five times as high in workers aged 60-64 and nearly seven times as high in workers aged 65 and over.

 

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NFU Mutual said awareness of farm safety had however never been higher, with 67 per cent of 1,800 farmers surveyed in its Voice of the Farm survey suggesting they were aware of Farm Safety Week (July 15 to 19).

 

Stephanie Berkeley of the Farm Safety Foundation added: “Many farmers are using technology, learning business skills and taking innovative steps to make their farm businesses safe, resilient and sustainable but it is equally important for them to realise that they are the farms greatest asset.

 

“Investing in your physical and mental well-being will be the only way to really future proof your business, and your life.”

39 people killed in 2018-19:

  • 14: killed when struck by a moving vehicle
  • 9: killed when injured by an animal
  • 7: killed by a fall from height
  • 3: killed when struck by an object
  • 3: killed by contact with machinery
  • 2: killed by asphyxiation/ drowning
  • 1: killed when struck against something fixed
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