01522 533388

Is your farm machinery safety up to scratch?

Carl Gryniewicz, managing director at Emprocom, leading Lincolnshire-based health and safety firm, explains that many injuries related to farm machinery can be avoided with sound procedures in place, and some farm workers may not be aware of the forces involved.

21 February 2020

The latest figures show the rate of injuries in agriculture, fishing and forestry is higher than any other sector. The total injury rate is 8.29 people per 1000 workers, which is five times higher than construction and 18 times higher than the ‘all industry’ rate.

In 2018/19 there were 32 fatal injuries, 25% of these were due to being struck by a moving vehicle and 10% from something collapsing or overturning.

Carl Gryniewicz, managing director at Emprocom, leading Lincolnshire-based health and safety firm, explains that many injuries related to farm machinery can be avoided with sound procedures in place, and some farm workers may not be aware of the forces involved.

“The power of agricultural machines can be overlooked if you’re working with them day in, day out,” says Carl.

“Leaking hydraulic oil from a burst hose can be projected at 3000 psi and will penetrate the skin as easily as it would if delivered through a hypodermic syringes, and a Power Take Off (PTO) drive shaft will wrap clothes, hair or arms at a rate of about 1.5 metres per second.”

“Farm machinery is just one area in a long list, that can cause fatal injuries and common hazards include tractors without roll-over protection structures (ROPS), PTO shafts, chainsaws, augers and machinery with unguarded moving parts.

“From experience the main risks we see are being hit or crushed by farm machinery, collision with buildings and other vehicles, overhead power lines, power take off systems (entanglement), overturning farm machinery and not following farm rules when carrying out tipping operations,” says Carl.

“The good news is that in 2019, non-fatal accidents are on a downward trend, showing that many farm businesses are identifying a need for structured health and safety systems,” adds Carl.

For farms looking for realistic systems which are easy to use and fit in with the working day, Emprocom provides services in the following areas:

• Safety audits
• Safety inspections
• Machinery and equipment safety reviews
• Safety training courses
• Production of easy to use documentation
• Briefings to the workforce
COSHH assessments
• Problem solving for operational issues
• Accident investigation
• Telephone health and safety advice

To find out more about farm health and safety, contact Emprocom, and email or call 01522 533388.

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